Why so many collared doves

My garden is popular with black/brown birds, sparrows, robins, jackdaws, wood pigeons and collared doves but today as i fed the birds in my garden i looked up at the silver birch tree and after counting i counted a total of 19 collared doves which i was gobsmacked at the number of them together as i have never experienced so many, but what i would like to know is why so many? As i only usually see perhaps two-four at most together, so to see 19 together was a wow moment, so i am just curious?

  • Hello Mr Ducklng

    Goodness me what a wonderful sight to see so many,like you we have several pairs around the gardens, but rarely do we see more than two at a time, nonchalantly  strutting about.Pity you did not have a camera handy.

    I did find this  information,from this site that may explain,if they have been breeding nearby.

     

  • Hi Mr Duckling

    I think this is a hard question to answer. Whereabouts in the country are you? The reason I ask is because I wonder whether there's been an influx from the Continent. It is well known that Woodpigeons migrate from Scandinavia to escape their harsh winters and some bolster the numbers in the UK. However, I've no idea whether Collared Doves do this and I've not been able to find any information online about this. Only speculation I'm afraid and not based on any real knowledge.

    ____________________________________________________________________

    Regards,Tony

    My Flickr Photostream 

  • In reply to SunnyKate2:

    Hi sunny kate thank you for the information, i will be keeping my eyes out with my camera handy next time and hopefully i can catch the flock.
  • In reply to TeeJay:

    Hi tony, i am in the ribble valley area of lancashire, i was just extremely shocked with happiness at the amount that was in the tree such a fabulous site to see.
  • In reply to Mr Duckling:

    Well, that probably knocks my theory on the head. I've never seen numbers like that - only twos and threes in my garden. I suppose there might be some local internal migration with birds moving south as the weather gets colder further north. I rather like them. So much more delicate than big fat Woodpigeons.

    ____________________________________________________________________

    Regards,Tony

    My Flickr Photostream 

  • I think it was this time last year that my family of five Collared Doves gradually increased to a regular feeding flock of about eight or nine ... will have to search out the footage which I caught on my garden trailcam!

    Edit:  scroll down this page ... apparently it was ten!

    community.rspb.org.uk/.../1215461

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • In reply to WendyBartter:

    WendyBartter said:

    Edit:  scroll down this page ... apparently it was ten!

    HERE is Wendys direct link save you scrolling....Lovely Wendy

     

  • Many thanks Kate!

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • Thanks Everyone. Mr.Duckling, that must have been a wonderful sight. I'm afraid I cannot answer your question. However, I believe the reason we had as many as 12 Collared Doves a few years ago was because of our bird feeders.  We had many bird feeders in our back garden, several of which held sunflower hearts and from which the Doves and Wood Pigeons could feed. That quickly lead to our two pairs of Collared Doves very quickly becoming a dozen birds. It was at that point when we began seeing Sparrow Hawks whizzing through our garden or perching and staring intently in every direction. That summer I watched a Sprawk mantling over a Collared Dove on three different occasions and Mr GB also surprised another one day when parking the car. I timed one Sprawk, and from the time I noticed the fluttering mantling until the Sprawk flew away with its prey, 45 minutes had passed. In that time the Sprawk had taken off many feathers and opened the crop of the Dove, removing all of our expensively-bought sunflower hearts from the Dove's crop before it could lift the Dove off the ground and fly away!

    Kind regards, 

    Ann

  • In our area we get gatherings of Collared doves in the winter, they mass in trees & can see 50/60 at times. It could be all your local youngsters have got together for the winter, especially if it's a bit sheltered around you, or there is a good food supply!

    Best wishes

    Hazel in the Gironde estuary, France