Stock Dove (Columba oenas)
Taken at Otmoor, Oxon., on March 13th 2016.
(1/400th sec at f9)
© David Hastings
DescriptionL: 28 - 32 cm; WS: 60 - 66 cm
Rather like a feral pigeon in size and shape, it is smaller and shorter-tailed than a Wood Pigeon. It has blue-grey plumage with a green neck patch, and shows no white on the wings in flight.
The Stock Dove is widely distributed in the UK, except for parts of northern Scotland and Ireland, with particularly high densities in the English Midlands and South West. Over half the European population is found in the UK.
Breeding habitat is wooded areas, forest edges, and large undisturbed parks with mature oaks and other trees. Can be found in small flocks on farmland stubble in winter.
A rather shy bird. It is most commonly detected by its song.
Amber status. There are about 260,000 territories in the UK.