Dove Love

It is a simply beautiful day here in Nova Scotia — a day that hints strongly of spring.  It is the sort of day that begs you to open windows wide and to delight in the steady drip-drip of melting snow and ice.  And I just heard the most beautiful song — a chickadee singing his little heart out with his “fair weather” melody, a call that is distinctly different from his excited winter song.  I can’t help but smile every time I hear it.

barespotsA few bare spots are starting to appear around the bases of trees and in spots where the wind blew the snow away before it could compact into drifts.  The mourning doves and a little sparrow share the easy dinner revealed by the melt.

dovesI like mourning doves, unlike a lot of people — I think they’re a pretty bird, especially in flight, and I don’t even mind their somewhat mournful song.

dovebranchThese dove photos were taken in a rain shower a few days ago — I think they’d be much prettier with the sun on them.

mrredpollAlways happy to pose it seems — even in the rain — are Mr. Redpoll and Mr. Finch.  They are both just now starting to show some of the more brilliant colour they will gain over the next few weeks as Spring really does approach.

finch_redpollYou know, one could almost convince one’s self that these branches hold the beginnings of tiny leaf buds, but nah, I guess that’s just wishful thinking.

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Author: nancybond

A writer, photographer, naturalist from small town Nova Scotia, Canada.

32 thoughts on “Dove Love”

  1. Aren’t the doves adorable? We watch them a LOT, although the snow buntings are our current obsession. :-)

    Ah, snow buntings. :) We don’t get them here, unfortunately. But it’s too noisy and busy with people coming and going all the time, I think. My parents have been watching a flock in Walton. My father, who is a lover of birds, doesn’t have a good thing to say about the doves. I think it is their persistent, sad cry that annoys him, though I find it strangely soothing. But I’m weird that way. ;)

  2. Very NICE Nancy…nice of course meaning wonderful! I love watching bird visit the feeders..they are always entertaining! gail

    Hi Gail — yes, it would be a long/er, dull/er winter without our feathered friends. :)

  3. We haven’t had red polls in years – such pretty little birds. I went out to see if the witch hazel might be doing something – alas nothing at all. It really is a wintery winter this year.

    I’ll trade you a handful of birds for a witch hazel. :) They are so pretty. I think redpolls are fast becoming one of my favorites, too — I do love the friendly little chickadees, but we haven’t had many this winter. The redpolls on the other hand are practically fearless and there are dozens of them. Thanks for stopping by.

  4. I too love the mourning doves and find their call very pleasant. Their lovely, soft colours and that pretty blue ring around their eyes really show in the sunlight.
    I hope we get to see the redpolls here again someday.
    We have bright sunshine too, although it was 11ºF/-11.6ºC on our back porch this morning. I went out into the brisk air and it felt wonderfully fresh. The temps have climbed to about 30ºF/-1ºC now and it’s a beautiful day! Spring surely can’t be too far away :)

    Hi Kerri — I do hope you’re right. Days like this one certainly give one reason to hope. (Though we are expecting some unpleasant weather on Thurs…hopefully, nothing too serious.) Hearing that chickadee song was like a tonic today!

  5. I enjoyed your birds. We don’t get mourning doves here, at least not out in the ‘burbs. I think they are pretty. I’ve noticed a lot more birds in the last few days too, and I have noticed their songs sound much more cheerful!

    There now, it’s not just me! :) The doves are very pretty, especially with their wings and tail feathers spread. Some find them a nuisance, but I like them very well.

  6. Those doves look very sweet. I’ve not seen one before. Chickadees, however, are rampant around here. I recently spotted one that seemed to be chastising a lurking hawk. He was a brave little guy.

    Oh yes, the chickadees can be feisty! :) We haven’t had as many this year as we have in the past; I do know that a huge logging project not too many miles from here has probably disturbed some of their nesting places…that could be one reason. Hopefully, they make a strong comeback next year. The doves are very sweet. :)

  7. Beautiful pictures! I think you might be right on the last picture. There do seem to be some buds!

    Well, I thought so too, Dave…but then I thought, ‘can’t be’. Here’s hoping…I’ll keep an eye on them.

  8. Love the header picture Nancy.
    I am quite fond of the ring collard doves we have in the garden – fortunately just one pair and they keep out of the veg garden.
    I like Mr. Redpoll!
    K

    Mr. Redpoll is a dashing fellow, isn’t he? And thanks for your kind words on the new header — THINK SPRING, say I! :-)

  9. I have a soft spot for the mourning doves too. I love the sound they make when they fly away–a sound that beats with the timing of their wings. You have many of the same birds in your garden right now that I do. Aren’t the finches precious?

    The finches are adorable, and it is so much fun to watch their acrobatics. :)

  10. Nancy .. we have had our Morning Doves come back to our grape arbor (their favorite roost) .. I love them too .. they are graceful gentle birds .. hubby said he could have sworn he heard a robin today .. who knows ? stranger things have happened ? LOL
    Great pictures girl !

    Thanks, Joy! I wouldn’t be surprised if you had heard a robin — I had someone tell me the same thing at the grocery store this evening! We do have a few that overwinter, but you never hear them. I hope you do have a returning robin! Keep us posted.

  11. I enjoy watching the Mourning Doves too Nancy. They are really good at eating the birdseed off the ground that the messy wrens drop everywhere. :) By the way I love the new header, very cheerful & springlike!

    Thank you on the new header — I got a bit tired of looking at the snow, both here and everywhere else, too. Yes, between the doves, pigeons, and the occasional pheasant that wanders out of the woods, they do a great job of cleanup. :)

  12. I just melt every time I see a mourning dove! Such delightful little creatures. I love hearing the chickadee and the tufted titmouse. Lovely melodies.
    Brenda

    Hi Brenda! How are things in The Pines? That particular chickadee song is so special — it seems we only hear it this time of year and it’s as if they save it just for spring. :)

  13. I am so enjoying seeing all the winter birds on the garden blogs! I’ve just put out my first feeder, but they haven’t found it yet. Darn!

    Oh, they will! It takes a few days, maybe even a week for them to find the seed, but when they do, they won’t forget. :) I’m glad you enjoy the bird photos.

  14. We love our dove pair, too!

    And I’m so glad to be hearing the spring territorial songs of robins, chickadees, and Carolina wrens.

    It’s a sure sign of Spring to me! Thanks for your visit.

  15. I was excited to hear a complex song from a small bird last week, during our weather warmup. I know all the winter chirps and pips that the birds sing at my feeder, but this song trilled and soared and didn’t stop. No matter how hard I searched, I couldn’t track down the song. Perhaps it was a chickadee.

    It is possible — chickadees have many calls, some of them apparently quite complex. I love your description, that it, “…trilled and soared and didn’t stop.” :-) Spring is such a happy time of year.

  16. Nancy,
    Loved the nice photos of the cute birds. I know y’all are glad to be seeing a few hints of spring’s upcoming arrival and eager to say farewell to all of that snow and ice.

    Jon at Mississippi Garden

    That’s for sure, Jon — seems like it’s been an extraordinarily long winter, though I’m sure it broke no records. It just FEELS that way. ;)

  17. I just love doves too. They are common as an old shoe but they do make the garden seem more lively. This time of year here their eyeliner becomes more blue and the pink floresence on the sides of their neck becomes more noticeable. They are beginning to sing about their territories here. Spring is on the way.

    I do believe you’re right, Lisa. :) Yesterday was the first day I actually caught a glimpse of Spring, and it was wonderful. Your doves and their colouring sound very pretty.

  18. Great photos. The red poll is so cute. We don’t get them here, so it is nice to see one on your blog.

    Jan
    Always Growing

    Hi Jan — the little redpolls are fast becoming one of my favourites!

  19. I love those little red polls–I have to travel to see them, though. That’s one of the things I’m enjoying about the garden/nature blogs–it’s almost as good as seeing them in my own backyard.

    I’m glad I can bring you a glimpse of the bevy of birds that hang around the feeders all winter. :)

  20. Nancy, I have to empathize with your sensation of wondering exactly when Spring will decide to show up. I am a summer-born, baseball-playing sort of person and Winter can seem to drag for an unconscionable length of time. I’m glad you have your little feathered friends there to help cheer up a gal in the dog days of Winter. Out here in Portland, I always have rain to make it more – um – cheery?

    Hey, rain is good! :) This winter in particular seems to drag on, but spring will come when it comes, and there’s no doubt about that!

  21. I don’t mind the doves either Nancy, and I actually like their mournful song. We have lots of them here too. I’m always afraid my dog is going to catch one ~ they’re so slow to get up off the ground ~ and he loves to chase them. arggg. I think spring is around the corner and it seems the birds think so too!

    It’s another beautiful day here today, Kathleen — but only the calm before [another] winter storm, it seems. I imagine Winter has a few more surprises tucked up her sleeve yet. :)

  22. Beautiful mouring dove photos, Nancy … and like you, enjoy in their mournful song, waking me both here and at the lake.

    Oh, they would be so haunting at the lake! Do you hear loons?

  23. Hi Nancy,
    Those little red polls are so sweet. I haven’t seen them here. I think that I see the beginnings of leaf buds on those branches :)

    I really think they are the beginnings of leaf buds! I’ll take a closer look in a few days…if the tree isn’t buried!

  24. I think the letter ‘u’ should be removed so these dear birds could become morning doves. I think the song is anything but mournful. I find it cheery, and I think they are among the most beautiful of birds. The red and blue and yellow birds get all the attention, but I’m fondest of the morning (hah! I’ll just change it myself!) doves’ color. Years ago we had my late mother’s cat whose name was Grey Baby, and the spring or sunny day song of the chickadee has been the sound of Grey Baby ever since to our minds.

    Grey Baby is perfect for that sweet song…I’ll think of that every time I hear it now, I’m sure. :)

  25. oh, my apostrophe should have been between the e and the s instead of after the s. Sorry. I got way too thrilled with my spelling change idea, and goofed. :<)

    Lashes with a wet noodle!

  26. I see the buds! I see them–jumping up and down with you! It’s nice to see the rain drops and not the icy drops for awhile. It’s true–the song of little birds in Spring is so joyful that how could you not smile.

    Well, that just clinches it for me. They ARE buds. Period. :-) The birds are certainly a noisy bunch today!

  27. I like Mourning Doves too — their call always reminds me of summer twilights.

    Yes, I can imagine that. They remind me of my seaside home where my parents still live, and foggy mornings. :)

  28. I have been hearing the chickadees’s spring song too, Nancy. Wow, those are good dove shots, and so close.
    Don’t you just love their spooky call?

    I do love their call, and don’t find it mournful at all, but comforting.

  29. We’ve been innundated with Goldfinches and House Finches and Mourning Doves. I love each and every one of them, and crave the call of the dove. Mournful? Not so much – I think more soulful and poetic. Lovely, Nancy. I’ve missed visiting here and your delightful photos and prose.

    Soulful and poetic suits their lovely call to a tee. :) It’s good to see you back!

  30. Ah .. birds always make me smile. Those doves look a bit different from what we have here. Thank you for sharing and making me smile.

    Hi Blossom — you’re most welcome! I’m sure they do vary in colour, markings, etc. in the same way that jays do from one part of the country to another.

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