This is a mid-sized pigeon much smaller than a Woodpigeon and rather more delicate than a Rock Dove or Town pigeon. It completely lacks any areas of white but, at rest, it looks like a bluish-grey dove with double black wing bar and iridescent light green feathers on the side of the neck. In flight the tail is the same colour as the rest of the bird with a broad dark tip.
These birds breed in holes and crevices in trees, buildings and cliffs and even in rabbit burrows! They are birds of open woodland, parkland and even gardens. They are semi- colonial and there may be several nests in a derelict building or where the right sort of nest box is available in large numbers. The call is a deep and powerful 'Woo-wuh' given six to ten times in succession.
The Stock Dove breeds over much of Europe and into Asia extending into the coniferous forest zone in some areas. Continental birds move South and West for the winter. The British and Irish population probably numbers about 270,000 pairs - much increased over the last thirty years when the were severely affected by agro-chemicals.
A blue pigeon without white and lacking obvious identification features.
Length 330 mm Closed wing 220 mm Weight 300 gms
A Bird On! Sketch by Chris Mead
Copyright © 1996 by Jacobi Jayne & Company and Chris Mead