Q:

What food do doves eat?

A:

Rock doves or feral pigeons eat seeds and grains that they pick up from the ground. Pigeons are also opportunistic and will eat cake, popcorn and bits of bread. They have been known to eat discarded animal protein such as meat from chicken bones and cheese from pizza crusts. Doves of all kinds will also eat worms, slugs, snails, insects and small lizards. Some doves have a preference for fruit.

Doves that eat seeds have evolved a specialized digestive tract to help them process the seeds. They can be seen pecking at grit, which is stored in their gizzard. The grit is then used to grind the seeds after it leaves the bird's crop. Seed-eating doves need lots of water. Unlike other birds, pigeons don't need to raise their heads to swallow, but can pump the water into their throats like horses. Doves who live in the desert can drink the water found in cacti and other succulents and can tolerate salt water.

Baby pigeons, or squabs, are fed crop milk by both parents. This is a liquid nutrient that resembles milk. Some squabs are fed crop milk for a few days while others are fed crop milk even after they've fledged.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What are some facts about doves?

    A:

    Doves rest their heads between their shoulders when they sleep, and they primarily eat seeds and fruit rather than insects. They typically lay only two eggs at the time, and the eggs hatch in about two weeks. Both parents care for the babies, which leave the nest after seven to 28 days. Notably, doves mate for life.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do white doves eat?

    A:

    White doves feed primarily on seeds. Rocket Swag lists popcorn kernels, millet and sunflowers as particularly suitable. Grit in the form of crushed oyster and egg shells should be provided separately. Soft foods, such as cornbread and hard-boiled eggs, can be mixed into the seeds. The occasional bug, worm or green can be added to their diet as well. White doves can also eat different grains and wheat.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do mourning doves eat?

    A:

    Mourning doves primarily consume seeds, which make up over 90 percent of their diet. Their diet commonly includes the seeds from plants such as ragweed, sunflower, wheat, millet, corn and pokeweed. Occasionally, mourning doves eat insects and snails.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do baby doves eat?

    A:

    Baby doves are fed crop milk, which is produced in both parent birds' crop glands. The feed is created during the cycle of incubation. However, not all birds are able to produce the grayish milk. To compensate, parents consume large amounts of seeds and water when they are off the nest and allow the mixture to soak in their crop for feeding purposes.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore