The Stock Dove is an widely overlooked attractive bird missed by many birdwatchers who dismiss it as 'just another pigeon'. Its as if they just can't be bothered to distinguish it from Feral Pigeons.
When standing still they just look uniformly dull grey but if you get a good view you will see a shiny green patch on the side of the neck, it has a pinkish breast and only very small black bars in the wing.
In flight they again look dull grey apart from a diagnostic broad black border around most of the wing.
Breeds in open woods, parks, farmland and also in ruins. Winters on farmland, particularly stubble fields.
Like all pigeons, Stock Doves have a well-developed crop; a sac inside the throat where food can be stored before it is digested. This enables the bird to gather plenty of seeds quickly before retreating to a safe place where the food can be digested properly.
A resident bird in temperate regions but to some extent migratory elsewhere; birds from NE and central Europe migrate to Mediterranean areas, especially Spain.
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