Where Do Doves Live?


Quick Answer

Doves live throughout the Americas; different species inhabit various areas of the United States, South America and Canada, and sometimes live in different places during the year. Mourning doves, also called American mourning doves, have one of the largest ranges of all bird species, as subspecies live year-round throughout the continental United States, while others spend summers in Canada and winters in Mexico or Central America. Other species, like the White-winged dove, inhabit a smaller range that includes the southeastern United States and islands of the Caribbean.

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Full Answer

Mourning doves, among the largest doves, have a large population size throughout their range. Five subspecies exist; each prefers a different range, although some territories overlap. The West Indian subspecies lives throughout the Antilles and travels as far north as the Florida keys. Eastern mourning doves live throughout the East Coast and several outlying islands, while Western mourning doves live in the American West and Mexico. The Panamanian subspecies lives in Central America, while Clarion Island doves live exclusively on the Clarion Island in the Pacific.

White-winged doves choose living areas based on food availability and breeding opportunities. Although they inhabit warm islands south of Florida year-round, some birds of this species migrate to the Carolinas for breeding. Some doves spend summers in the American southwest, where they feed and breed in the warm desert climates. Others spend winters in Central America and the Gulf Coast, while a small number fly as far north as Alaska and Canada.

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