RESEARCH: Turtle Dove numbers are declining in the United Kingdom

A research study in 2021 found that the number of Turtle Doves were declining in the United Kingdom. Volunteers, farmers, study groups, bird clubs, and other organizatios all contributed to the research. 

The first national survey of Turtle Doves in the UK in fifty years showed that there were only 2,100 pairs of Turtle Doves that now breed in the country, which is a decline of 98% from 125,000 pairs in 1970.

The survey found that the Turle Dove is now concentrated in south-eastern and eastern England, and as far north as Yorkshire.

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Eurasian Collared Dove

The Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) is a medium-sized bird. It is closely related to the Island Collared Dove, the African Collared Dove, and the Spotted Turtle-Dove.

The Eurasian Collared Dove has a long tail, and a slim pinkish-grey body that is darker above and paler below, with a blue-grey underwing patch. It has a black half-collar around its neck. Its tail is grey-buff above and dark grey underneath. It has short reddish legs, a black beak, and red eyes (but from a distance, its eyes look black). It has white or yellow bare skin around its eyes. 

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CREATURE FEATURE: Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove

The Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove (Gallicolumba luzonica) is a medium-sized bird in the dove and pigeon family of ground birds. 

The Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove is grey with iridescent purple, blue, or green feathers. It has a whitish-buff underbelly that has a reddish stripe that looks like blood on its chest. The male has a brighter red patch than the female. Its wings are grey with black bands. Its body is rounded, with a short tail and long pink legs. 

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Zebra Dove

The Zebra Dove (Geopelia striata) is a medium-sized bird in the Columbidae family of pigeons. It is also known as the Barred Ground Dove. It is related to the Peaceful Dove (Geopelia placida) and the Barred Dove (Geopelia maugeus). 

The Zebra Dove is brownish-grey with black and white bars (broad stripes). Its underparts are pinkish with black bars on the sides of its neck, chest, and belly. Its face is blue-grey, with bare blue skin around its eyes. It has a long, narrow tail and a slender body. There are white tips on its tail feathers. 

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Common Emerald Dove

The Common Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica) is a medium-sized bird in the pigeon family. It is also known as the Asian Emerald Dove, the Green Dove, the Green-Winged Pigeon, or the Grey-Capped Emerald Dove. 

The Common Emerald Dove has an emerald green back and wings. Its flight and tail feathers are blackish. Its head and underparts are dark pink, fading to greyish on its lower belly. Its eyes are dark brown, its beak is bright red, and its leg and feet are rufous (red-brown).

The male has a white patch on the edge of its shoulders and a grey crown, which the female lacks. Females have a browner colour, with a grey mark on the shoulder. 

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Superb Fruit Dove

The Superb Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus superbus) is a medium-sized bird. It is also known as the Purple-Crowned Fruit Dove.

The male Superb Fruit Dove is very colourful with a purple crown, green cheeks, and an orange nape (back of its neck). His chest is grey, and he has olive-green wings with dark spots, and his tail is tipped with white. The female is mostly green with a white abdomen, blue wing tips, a light-blue chest, and a small dark-blue spot on the back of her head. Both sexes have yellow eyes and yellow eye-rings.

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Indian Rock Pigeon

The Indian Rock Pigeon (Columba livia intermedia) is a medium-sized game bird. It is also called the Indian Rock Dove.

The Indian Rock Pigeon has a pale grey back and wings, with two black bars on each wing. It has a dark bluish-grey head, neck, and chest, with an iridescent greenish-purple neck and wing feathers. Its eyes are orange, red, or golden, with a blue-grey eye-ring. Its beak is grey-black with a white cere. Its feet are purplish-red. Its tail has a black band. Male and female Indian Rock Pigeons are similar, but the female has less iridescence on her neck.

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Black-Naped Fruit Dove

The Black-Naped Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus melanospilus) is a medium-sized bird.

The male Black-Naped Fruit Dove has a black nape (back of the head) with a white head, yellow throat, and patches of yellow on his chest. The rest of his body is brownish olive-green. The underside of his tail is yellow and deep pinkish-purple. The female is green to olive-green all over, with a greenish head and greenish wings. Both male and female have olive-green eyes, a cream-coloured beak, and creamy-pink legs.

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Speckled Pigeon

The Speckled Pigeon (Columba guinea) is also called the African Rock Pigeon or the Guinea Pigeon in the Columbidae family . It is a common medium-sized African bird.

The Speckled Pigeon has rufous (red-brown) wings and back. Its wings are speckled with white spots. Its upperparts and underparts are blue-grey. Its head is grey with red patches around its eyes. Its neck is brownish, streaked with white. Its beak is pale and its legs are red.

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Emerald-Spotted Wood-Dove

The Emerald-Spotted Wood Dove (Turtur chalcospilos) is an African bird of the Columbidae family – pigeons and doves.

The Emerald-Spotted Wood Dove is a medium-sized bird with a pale grey-brown back, neck, wings, and tail. Its wings have bright metallic or iridescent green spots or patches. It has black bands on the lower back and tail. Its forehead, crown, and the back of the neck (nape) are blue-grey, fading to pink-grey on its throat. Its underparts are mauve-pink, becoming whiter on the belly. Its beak is black with a red base.

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Crested Pigeon  

The Crested Pigeon (Ocyphaps lophotes) is a common Australian bird.

The Crested Pigeon is grey with tints of brown. Its wings are brown-grey with black stripes. Its primary feathers are brown, purple, blue, and green. Its crest is black. Its black tail is long with a white tip. It has a grey beak, down-turned at the tip, with pink-grey legs, and brown-orange eyes. It has a bright orange eye-ring.

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