Spotted Turtledove nesting

Spotted Turtledove

Spotted Turtledove

One morning last week while having breakfast I noticed a Spotted Turtledove flying frequently to a melaleuca bush near our sunroom.  As we watched it flew down to the ground several times, each time collecting fine twigs and then it carried the twigs back to the nest. This went on sporadically over the nest few days.

Two days ago I searched the bush and eventually found the nest, complete with the female sitting on the nest. Like most doves and pigeons the nest is a flimsy affair, consisting of barely enough twigs to hold the eggs. How the babies manage to stay in the nest beats me.  Mind you, I will give the birds full points for hiding this nest. It is very hard to find as it’s located in some very thick foliage. Should make photography of the babies quite challenging – perhaps not possible. They are easily spooked from the eggs or young so I might just let them get on with hatching the eggs and later feeding the young.


6 Responses to “Spotted Turtledove nesting”

  1. Ken Rolph says:

    Spotted doves are among my favourite birds. We have about 60 in our street (it’s hard to count exactly). They hang around with the crested pigeons who are a relatively new arrival.

    These doves wouldn’t win any design awards for nests. Over the years I’ve found a number of their eggs which fall out. The best nest I saw was in our sweet peas. It was about shoulder height. I didn’t notice it until the young dove was almost grown. It must have got used to me because I walked past here all the time. After it launched out on its own it never seemed to be afraid of me. I even picked it up on some occasions and sat it on my knee for a minute or two. I had to start scaring it because it wasn’t afraid of my two terriers.

    It was these doves which made me interested in bird nesting places. They badly need help. Of course they don’t use nest boxes. I’m trying out various kinds of shelves or ledges up in our melaleuca. It’s only a suburban backyard with two large shrubs. The birdbath and feeding table are a few metres away and they do nest in the top of the shrub. I suspect they want a bit of seclusion. I’ll be interested to see if I get any tenants.

    • Chris (Adelaide SA) says:

      Hi Jane

      I so agree with you…the “cooing” of these birds is literally doing my head in. They just don’t stop.
      Bar me cutting down my trees or moving house, I’m at a loss on what to do. Any ideas ??


    • Jenna says:


      I see it’s been a while since you posted your comment about nesting places for spotted turtledoves. Did the birds use those shelves/ledges in your melaleuca? You say that these doves “Of course don’t use nest boxes” – which I did not know. Indeed I was just preparing to make them some, and was using the computer to get an idea of what sort of box they might like! But you’re sure they won’t use nest boxes?

      At the moment a lovely dove is nestled between the soft yellow shawls of a cassia fistula tree planted in my courtyard. It’s a marvellous sight! About 3 months ago we had a mother dove raise 2 chicks in another part of the courtyard. I’ve heard it said that though the birds may fly away once they’ve grown up, the next generation in that family is likely to come back to the same place, laying their eggs where the parents laid their’s. Do you know if that’s true? I’d like to know whether this new mother is one of the courtyard babies we watched 3 months ago!

  2. Jane says:

    These birds drive me crazy with their constant cooing each morning (and throughout the day) from our roof and outside our bedrooms. They are also dumb so if you chase them aeay they come back 15 mins later. They also breed like mad. They seem to be on every rooftop in our street! 🙁

    The councils should cull them and ban people feeding them.

  3. Trevor says:

    I agree with you Jane – although I do like the cooing of doves it can get monotonous and irritating after a few hours.

    Where there are large numbers of doves and pigeons around buildings this can cause health problems, so my suggestion is to approach your local council if you have concerns on this matter. Some local authorities do undertake culling where deemed necessary.

  4. sue says:

    Love doves
    cooing, maternal nature, faithfulness
    some say dumb, but maybe peaceful is a nicer name

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