I have recently published a blog featuring Ring Necked Doves. I have created several videos as well. They are every where along the slough lately, it’s not an obsession with me. What’s happening is the young have just left the nest and when I am sitting around working in the garden or on my wood projects it is hard to ignore them.

The parents are the original helicopter parents never further than 50 feet away. The photo above is one of the adults keeping a watchful eye, once in a while leaving the wire to make a short circling flight. It appears to be trying to encourage the two naer-do-wells to take the leap. They eventually did, diving right into the trailer loaded for a trip to the re-cyclers.

The fledgling is easy to spot while she is perched on an exposed branch, it’s more of an accident on her part. Doves are a good example of being good fliers but leave a lot to be desired with their landings. Shortly after this picture was taken the young Dove attempted a take off and fell deep into the pile. I was concerned for a while I would have to be the hero and fish her out of trouble. But they are resilient and a touch smarter than I think they are.

I assume Mom is the adult that saved them from the dreaded trash trailer. It is a lot of work to learn how to fly, the fledglings tire out rapidly. Not as quickly as I do, but they don’t have too much more energy than the old guy. I was actually waking up after falling asleep taking a break from working on my wood lathe. The Mother bird has patients, she perched upon that limb until the youngsters woke, then it was flight lessons time again. They learn by watching the Parents then when they gain courage they take a leap. Every time they fly, never have I seen a Dove fall out of the sky or tumble to the ground. I have seen Pelicans, Crows and a Red Tailed Hawk all fall from the sky. The Pelican hit a power line 400 yards away, the Crow actually fell out of the sky for some unknown reason and the Hawk flew into a fence after chasing a Bunny Rabbit.

The Doves landings should be of little surprise after seeing how the nests are constructed. Some balance precariously on unstable precipices. People are tempted to help them by “shoring” up the works. However the best help we can give is to simply leave them alone to their own devices.

Jacques Lebec Follow the Fork in the Road

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