Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Mourning all

Just when you thought that was that for 2015, news came in the at a Mourning Dove had turned up in Lerwick. This long distant migrant from southern Canada was the first record for Shetland and the 5th for Britain.

It was found on Saturday morning in a garden and lucky for us it stayed around the next day when we saw the bird in company of Collard and Rock Doves. This was a big twitch for Shetland with just seven of us looking on. The bird did little other than do a bit of preening in the hour I watched.

It is also known as the Rain Dove and is one of the most abundant and widespread bird in North America. It is thought that in some years as many as 70 million birds are present.

They can raise up to 6 broods in one year.

It is exceptional for birds to migrate over water, they usually fly in flocks at low altitude during the day. Not all Mourning doves migrate and some winter in Canada.

They prefer small wooded glades and open farmland avoiding dense woodland

On nearby Clickimin Loch the wintering Goldeneye had gathered with Tufted Duck and a few  Mallard
A happy new year to each and everyone of you, thanks for reading the blog, more to come next year. In the meantime take a look at my other blogs:

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