I have been stunned to see a lone Mourning Dove eating at my birdfood for ground feeding birds. I know that Mourning Doves are not winter birds but this one lonesome dove is living somewhere in the woods..seemingly all by itself. Mourning Doves in warm weather usually turn up at bird feeding stations in pairs.
This one has been seen by my husband also and both of us are baffled.
It looks healthy and full feathered; it walks normally and can fly off in an instant.
Several years back we had a large flock of robins in our woods by the “dead river” who stayed around all thru the coldest part of winter, feeding on dried berries on the thick shrubs by the river course. There was open water also at a spring in the river. These robins were fat and sassy and lived through the entire cold season in the woods below our home.
This Mourning Dove is kind of like the robins but it seems to be totaly alone.
I am curious to know if anyone else has ever known of such a winter thing with a migratory bird that normally flies to warmer places.
We also once had a large gray heron that lived by the open water spring, eating the minnows that crowded around the spring opening. We do not know if it lived through the winter though.
I hope this Mourning Dove makes it through the winter.
Curiously I have known of those who think this bird is a “Morning Dove” but its name comes from its mournful call; thus the Mourning Dove.

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  • Dale says:

    I have about a dozen mourning doves hanging around the farmstead. I have feed out for the squirrels and birds and they seem to have found it, They do not come up by house feeders but stay at the out lying feeders. I found this odd also, They are usually gone with the first frost but did notice some hanging around through the fall.


  • gail chinn says:

    enjoyed your Mourning Dove story. We have a pair of Eurasian Collared Doves wintering here that we have enjoyed watching. There are a lot of days that you know they are wishing they weren’t in ND. They side up in the trees watching, watching, watching until the other birds scratch enough out of the feeder so they can eat. We built them a ground feeding feeder finally so they could enjoy their meal. Amazing how quickly they can eat and be gone.


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