Spotted Dove sunbathing

posted in: Feathers-maintenance | 0

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Lately, a pair of Spotted Doves (Streptopelia chinensis) have adopted my garden, visiting a few times a day to forage and to sunbathe. Initially, I managed to see only one large bird lazing on the driveway, raising its wings to soak in the sun (left). I only noticed it when I walked out of the house and th bird noisely flew off into the garden. Besides the characteristic loud flapping, also made by other pigeons like Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans), my attention was also directed to its large pair of wings and tail feathers as it flew off.

I used to surprise the bird a few times when it was foraging on the ground of my garden. Subsequently I became more careful. The bird meticulously searched the ground, foraging for up to half an hour at a time, pecking the ground whenever it found seeds, ants and what not before moving off.

During hot periods when the driveway is heated up, it will lie on the tiles, spreading its wings upwards to the sun. It would appear that this form of sunbathing is characteristic also of the Peaceful Dove (Geopelia striata), previously known as Zebra Dove.

One day, I found a pair perching on the top of my gate. This was the first time I have seen the two birds together (below).


YC Wee
May 2008

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