< Mourning Dove Success
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Name: Kristin
Status: other
Age: 20s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 4/26/2004

A mourning dove layed two eggs in one of my hanging baskets on my front porch. Everyday for at least a month I saw mama dove sitting in her little nest. I was very careful not to disturb her or cause her any stress while she was there. For the last two days, I hadn't seen her there so I decided to look into the nest. Inside the hanging basket, I saw an egg coated with mites. When my eyes came into focus, I noticed a very well developed baby dove (feathers and all) that was also covered in mites and very much dead. I was so sad to see this. I proceeded then to clean out the hanging basket. I've noticed the mom and dad dove are still hanging around the area and it sounds as if they are crying. Should I have done something different? I feel terrible for the "mourning" mourning doves!

No, there is nothing more you could have or should have done. While such instances are unfortunate they are common. Doves (and other creatures) adapt to loss of nests/young by trying again, as this pair probably will. The "mourning" sound is not at all mourning in the human sense of the word, is in fact a courtship and mating call, which indicates they are probably on their way to renesting.

J. Elliott

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