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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Forest and Rangeland Birds of the United States

Natural History and Habitat Use

White-winged Dove -- Zenaida asiatica

RANGE: Breeds from southeastern California and southern Nevada to southwestern Texas south, through Central America into western South America. Introduced and established in southern Florida. Winters generally in the breeding range, but northern birds are mostly migratory, casually ranging north to northern California and Colorado and occurring regularly along the Gulf Coast east to Florida.

STATUS: Locally abundant.

HABITAT: Occupies a variety of habitats in semiarid woodlands. Prefers tall, dense, or brushy riparian woodlands, with trees from 15 to 25 feet tall and an understory of thorny shrubs. Also occupies desert scrub, desert grassland, oak woodland, chaparral, valleys of desert mountains, and shade and fruit trees of agricultural areas, country roadsides, and suburban residential areas.

SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Nest sites with trees of low to medium height having dense foliage and fairly open ground cover.

NEST: Builds nests on relatively horizontal branches of a variety of trees and large shrubs in shaded sites, preferably in the interior of woodlands and thickets.

FOOD: Forages in shelter of thickets, weeds, or fields for seeds. Also eats mast, fruit, and some insects.

REFERENCES: Brown 1977, Cottam and Trefethen 1968, Neff 1940, Oberholser 1974a.

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