Saturday, July 21, 2018

Cape Turtle Dove

Another bird we saw in Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens near Cape Town was the Cape turtle dove, also known as the ring-necked dove and half-collared dove (Streptopelia capicola). 
Cape turtle dove. 
The Cape turtle dove is darker above than below, with dull grey or brown with a bit of pinkish lavender on the nape and a semi-collar of black on the lower nape. It has white tips on the slate tail feathers. The plumage variation is significant - some are light and some are sooty. The bill is black, the feet are dark purple and the eyes are almost black. They also appear to have a light blue patch on the forehead and a bit of light blue on the upper bill. 

Their are six races. We saw S. c. capicola, the nominate race, found in southwestern South Africa. From pictures, it appears to be darker than the other races. 

This photo captures the white tips on otherwise slate tail feathers. 

1 comment:

  1. So why are they called TURTLE doves? And where was the partridge in a pear tree?