Geopelia humeralis

General description: 

The Bar-shouldered Dove is a medium-sized, long-tailed dove. Adults doves have a blue-grey head, neck and upper breast, with a distinctive reddish-bronze patch on the hindneck, with dark barring. Young doves lack this patch and barring and tend to be duller overall. There is also a distinctive pinkish bar on the lower breast. The lower body is pale. They have a blue-grey eye-ring and reddish eye. They are usually seen in pairs or small parties. The northern subspecies hedlandi is lighter in colour. This species is also known as the Mangrove Dove, Scrub Dove, or Kookawook. Voice: A loud and distinctive 'cook coo cook coo' and a bubbling, descending call.

Conservation status: 

Not Threatened.

Diagnostic description: 

The Bar-shouldered Dove is a medium-sized, long-tailed dove. Adults doves have a blue-grey head, neck and upper breast, with a distinctive reddish-bronze patch on the hindneck, with dark barring. Young doves lack this patch and barring and tend to be duller overall. There is also a distinctive pinkish bar on the lower breast. The lower body is pale. They have a blue-grey eye-ring and reddish eye. They are usually seen in pairs or small parties. The northern subspecies hedlandi is lighter in colour. This species is also known as the Mangrove Dove, Scrub Dove, or Kookawook. Voice: A loud and distinctive 'cook coo cook coo' and a bubbling, descending call.

Behaviour: 

Size: 

27-30 cm, 130 g

Phylogeny: 

Taxonomy:

    Columba humeralis Temminck, 1821, Queensland. Despite superficial resemblances to Streptopelia, genus probably most closely related to bronzewing group (Phaps and allies), based on behaviour. Validity of races has been questioned, as differences appear very minor. Three subspecies recognized. (source: Handbook of the Birds of World)
Distribution: 

Subspecies and Distribution:

    * gregalis Bangs & J. L. Peters, 1926 - SE New Guinea. * humeralis (Temminck, 1821) - N & E Australia. * headlandi Mathews, 1913 - Pilbara region, NC Western Australia.
Habitat: 

are found in woodland with a grassy understorey and in nearby open areas, usually near water. They are also often found in mangroves and are frequently seen in urban areas. FOOD: Feed on the ground in short grass near cover. They need to drink throughout the day. They mainly eat seeds of grasses, herbs and sedges, as well as rhizomes (small root storages).

Trophic strategy: 

Feed on the ground in short grass near cover. They need to drink throughout the day. They mainly eat seeds of grasses, herbs and sedges, as well as rhizomes (small root storages).

Reproduction: 

The nest of the Bar-shouldered Dove is usually hidden in dense shrubs or trees and in gardens, throughout its range. A thin platform is made from twigs and roots and is placed in a fork or on a branch. Both parents incubate the eggs and feed the chicks. Young doves are fed with 'crop milk', specially produced by the parent birds (a common characteristic of pigeons and doves).Breeding season: Year-round in the north, August to November in the south. Clutch size: Two Incubation: 14 days Time in nest: 21 days