Return to Main Page   Dakota Birder Blog    

Common Ground-Dove

Columbina passerina

Length: 6 to 7 inches Wingspan: 9 to 10 inches Seasonality: Rare Visitor
ID Keys: Scaled feather pattern on chest and head, short tail, bill pink at base, bright rusty red under wings in flight

Common Ground Dove - Columbina passerinaThe Common Ground-Dove is normally found only in the southern tier of states in the continental U.S., but does tend to wander widely to the north.  A quite tame bird, they will often remain sitting in a location until almost stepped upon.  Despite the tameness, they are not nearly as "urban" a bird as other doves such as the Inca Dove, and are more often found away from urban areas.

Habitat: Found in a variety of semi-open habitats with brush and grass, such as farms, forest edges, roadsides, and brushy thickets.

Diet: Feeds primarily seeds. Also feeds on fruits and berries, and occasionally on insects. 

Behavior: Feeds on the ground, walking around and picking up seeds and fallen fruit. 

Breeding: Non-breeder in South Dakota

Song: Soft repetitive woo-oo, rising on the second syllable

Migration: Thought to primarily be a permanent resident throughout most of its range, although there are some indications that some birds in the southwestern U.S. do migrate southward in the winter. 

Interactive eBird Map: Click here to access an interactive eBird map of Common Ground Dove sightings

Similar Species: Inca Dove, Ruddy Ground-Dove

Feeders: Will come for seeds scattered on the ground.

Conservation Status: Has undergone serious declines in many parts of its range in recent decades.

Further Information: 1) Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter, Common Ground-Dove

2) WhatBird - Common Ground Dove

3) Audubon Guide - Common Ground Dove

Photo Information: June 2015 - St. John's, U.S. Virgin Islands - Terry Sohl


Click on the map below for a higher-resolution view
Common Ground-dove - Columbina passerina - Range Map
South Dakota Status: The South Dakota Ornithologists Union shows only one record in the state, from October 1998 in Jones County.

Additional Common Ground-Dove Photos
Click for a higher-resolution version of these photos
 Common Ground Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground-Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground-Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground-Dove - Columbina passerinaCommon Ground-Dove - Columbina passerina