New bird family

by Deb
(Greenbrae, CA)

My brother-in-law passed away after a battle with lynphoma on February 25. My husband and I immediately flew to Tulsa to attend the funeral and be with family.

Upon arriving back home (Northern Cal - Marin County), I noticed a mourning dove sitting in a hanging basket where a fusia was basically all but dead. I had been considering throwing it away, but at that moment, with the sadness of our recent loss still very much with me, I decided if the bird was happy there, so be it. Turns out this bird and his/her mate were in the process of building a nest! There are now two eggs (laid several hours apart) and the birds are taking turns sitting on them. I was touched to read other stories here of a pair of doves appearing after the loss of a loved one.

I read that putting a dish of water and perhaps some seed on the ground would be beneficial for our pair, so have just done so. My concern is that we have many, many birds and squirrels around here, and I'm wondering if these doves will even bother with the food and water. We have a hanging bird feeder that sparrows and finches feed from all the time, as well as the spilled seed on the ground. The other day, a squirrel got very close to the nest, causing the dove to spread it's wings in a protective manner over the eggs. By putting out this dish of water and adding more seed to the ground near the nest, will I be attracting more squirrels and jays that might disturb our nesting pair?

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Mar 13, 2011
Doves nesting
by: Mavmacaw

I have had mourning doves nesting in the same place for three years and I learned that to protect the nest, keep your feeders full so that spillage may fall to the ground.

Doves take turns leaving the nest so Momma dove will go to the feeders while pappa is protecting the chicks or eggs. Hope this works for you as well as it has for me. This will avoid any predators invading her nest.

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