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White-Winged Dove

Zenaida asiatica

This bird’s native range extends from the south-western USA through Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. Most of the USA’s birds are summer visitors, choosing to spend the winter in Mexico, though in southeastern Arizona and in southern New Mexico and Texas along the Rio Grande River Valley they are year-round residents.

During the early twentieth century, habitat loss and excessive hunting brought the population of these birds down from 12 million to under a million in 1939. Since that time, hunting practices have been better managed and the birds have adapted to urban and suburban life. In 2001 the population was estimated to be 2.2 million. It’s still a far cry from the late nineteenth century, but it’s moving in a good direction.

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