We have several Mourning Doves in our back yard, and have been feeding them for years. We have four feeders placed around the yard, and have seen quite an increase of these beautiful little creatures!
This year, Spring has arrived with it's usual "community" of doves, with one pair, nesting on our back patio!
We have two buckets on a shelf, that I normally plant flowers in, but before I had the chance to plant, we were surprised with the beginnings of a nest!
I decided to wait a few days, to see what happened, and, about three days later, I was amazed to see a dove (later determined to be "Dad"), sitting in the bucket! Within two days, two little eggs were comfortably tucked inside!
So far, the pair have laid and hatched one brood successfully, and now we are blessed to see another two eggs in the nest!
"Mom & Dad" are very protective of their nest, but do trust us to come & go through the Patio with ease...even letting us take an occasional peek! We have also been "allowed" to take a few pictures!
We truly enjoy our new "tenants" and hope to see many happy returns, every Spring!
We had just returned to our California home after being gone a couple of months to discover a dove sitting on a nest on the fireplace ledge on our patio just about 3 feet from the door.
We watched closely and carefully went in and out the door so as not to alarm the dove. Until it got use to us.
Sometimes it would at times fly off the nest but always returned, this gave us the opportunity to peek at the nest and we noticed two eggs.
Then one day my husband informed me that the babies had arrived, two little fuzz balls. I was surprised to see them with pin feathers so soon.
One day I noticed that only one dove was involved we could tell because somehow it got a sore above its beak and we were able to identify it each time.
I worried so about these babies, I read that if only one parent has the task of caring for the babies they are not usually successful.
Just today I had the pleasure to witness the parent bird feeding the babies, what a precious sight this was.
Then the parent at times would get out of the nest and sit for a while, I think it was resting because when it is in the nest the babies are trying to climb on it. (hey, maybe they scratched its nose).
I hope and pray that the parent whether it be the mother or father can get these babies raised and out on their own and that they the parent will be ok after that.
It all started one surprising cold day in March when it had snowed and a small sparrow was chirping on my patio, probably as confused as humans about why it was snowing in March.
I decided he was hungry so I crumbled up some bread. I had a lavender plant out there, but she looked hardy so I left it there.
The next day, the sparrow came back and I fed it again. I guess he told some of his friends as I got visitors every morning.
Soon it became a habit to place bread crumbs out before I left for work. As if I needed one more thing to do before I left for work!
One day I noticed the mourning doves working diligently building a nest in my lavender plant and then one day, just like that, she had two eggs in her nest.
And just like the article stated, she appeared to never move from the basket. I was impressed with her dedication.
The dove has since gotten use to me going out there as I put bread crumbs and water. Today was our first warm day and instead of sitting on the eggs, the dove was watching them. I'm guessing they are about to hatch.
It's made me smile knowing that the doves felt they could nest right on my patio. Today I sat out on my deck enjoying the weather.
I suppose it's the male dove that was watching the eggs during the daytime. He didn't seem to mind me either.
Right around 5:00 p.m. I did happen to catch the switching of nesting duties. At first she laid beside the eggs so I thought maybe one had hatched.
Later, I observed that she was seated back over the eggs.
As an empty nester, I reflected on those years when I was expecting and how excited I was when I was having my baby.
My Memorial Day plans took an unusual turn today. I had not been out to my patio in a few weeks due to our Arizona weather, when I got an unusual surprise.
I went out to my patio this memorial weekend and started to turn the fan on when I saw that a dove had built a nest in the fan/light fixture.
After some friendly harassment from my relatives regarding my housekeeping skills I began to seriously worry about the predicament.
The dove was NOT in any mood to negotiate, and was not leaving. Apparently she had built a very comfortable nest and laid some eggs.
Now, I am not a hard hearted person but I do like to sit outside on my patio some evenings with my fan and light on. With this nesting situation things were definitely problematic.
Now I could just remove the light's dome fixture and dump the eggs, but then what would stop the dove from coming back looking for her young? Not to mention that I would feel like a heal for doing something that.
So I decided I will share my patio with Mrs. Dove. For now, her and her little ones are safe from wind, rain, sunlight, and predators.
I will keep you posted on how the young ones do when they hatch and "hopefully" leave the nest.
by Gordon & Donna de Leon
(Turlock, California USA)
Each year Mourning Doves make their nest in a vase 14 feet up on our front porch. Several batches of nestlings are born each year and since the porch is covered, the doves are seldom attacked by blue jays or other birds and the nest is too high for other animals.
The picture shows the windows right next to the nest and when we wash the window, the birds watch us carefully but do not fly away.
They provide a delightful view each year but we don't know if the same birds reuse the nest or if their offspring use it.