- Streptopelia decaocto, Eurasian collared-dove is a member of the dove and pigeon family. They are a gray stocky, medium-sized dove with squared tail. They have a slender black bill and a deep red iris. Their head and breast are pinkish. They have a partial black collar outlined in white on the back of the neck. There is a gray band across the coverts and the primary feathers are dark brown. S. decaocto have a wingspan of 18-22 in. (45-55 cm). The eyes have a deep red iris. The legs and feet of S. decaocto are a dark red. Males and females are very similar and change very little throughout the year. Immature birds are similar, but have pale reddish margins on the breast, wing, and back feathers. They lack a complete collar until they are about 3 months old. Young birds have red eyes and brownish red legs. A similar species is Streptopelia risoria, Ringed Turtle-Dove, and it is also nonnative.
- Life Cycle
- S. decaocto usually breeds between February and October in temperate climates but may breed year-round in warmer regions. Clutches usually have 2 eggs with one of the eggs being much larger. Parents share incubation which lasts for about 15 days. The eggs may hatch as much as 40 apart. After hatching the young are fed by regurgitation. The young fledge about 18 days after hatching and are independent by the time they are about a month old. The longest known lifespan of a S. decaocto was 13.6 years old.
- S. decaocto was found in Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Northern Greece, and Southern Bulgaria around 1930. It has naturally expanded its range across many parts of Europe, Asia and North Africa. S. decaocto was introduced to Antigua, Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Canada, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Dominica; Guadeloupe, Japan, Martinique, Mexico, Montserrat, Netherlands Antilles, Saint Kitts, Nevis, Turks Island, Caicos Island and the United States.
- Control Efforts
- S. decaocto is considered a pest species because it competes with native species outside its native range. It can be a problem in agricultural areas, especially where grains are grown. S. decaocto can be a carrier for West Nile Virus. It is hunted in some areas, but generally with little effect on the overall population.