Spotted Doves

To: Bruce Lindenmayer <>
Subject: Spotted Doves
From: martin butterfield <>
Date: Fri, 1 Jan 2010 17:32:36 +1100
I have commented in the past about the way this species seems to be approaching "take - off".  That  view is supported by the Chart in the attached spreadsheet.  I will confess to being astounded that for the last three years (NB the data for year 28 is draft as it hasn't been fully analysed yet) over 20% of sites have reported a SpoTted Dove (STD) at least once. 

A problem that may exist is that they are not - as far as I can see a tightly knit group, in the way that I understand Common Mynas were when they were first released.  The spreadsheet of No of years by Suburb shows a wide range of suburbs blessed (OK, cursed) with the presence of the species.  Obviously this will be influenced by the number of observers active in a suburb in a year but I believe the raw figures serve my illustrative intentions.

What is needed is someone with access to better software than myself and with more formal training in such matters - to have a thorough crack at understanding the distribution - both static and dynamic - of the species.  When I last discussed this there was hope of getting an Honours student form ANU to do this, but nothing tangible transpired.  Obviously if a researcher is found I am very happy to provide data, as has been done with Kate Grarock's Common Myna project.

One further comment is that if any research is undertaken it must include at least the city Queanbeyan and preferably the whole of SE NSW since otherwise any action which is taken in Canberra will be defeated by birds re-entering from the hinterland.


On Fri, Jan 1, 2010 at 4:18 PM, Bruce Lindenmayer <> wrote:
I am delighted to see so much recent interest in Spotted Doves (aka Spotted Turtle Doves) on the COG hot line.
Last year (2009), I sought help from Birds Australia, as I had a recollection that a past "Wingspan" had reported them as serious pests in Alice Springs.
BA sent me some information, including a Fact Sheet from the NT Govt Dept of Natural Resources etc which in summary said:
"Feral Spotted Turtle Doves first became established in Alice Springs in the early 1990s when approximately 10 birds were liberated from a backyard aviary. Since that time, the population has steadily grown and today [I'd guess 2007 or 2008] numbers are thought to exceed 8000 birds. The Spotted Turtle Dove impacts on the environment and residents of the town in a number of ways".
The Fact Sheet then lists impacts as their ability to breed all year round, being very adaptable to the urban environment, omnivorous, agressive to other species, a nuisance around aviaries, fowl yards and pet feeding areas, fouling areas with their droppings and disruptive with their constant cooing.
The Fact Sheet provided information on identification, guidelines to discouraging them in backyards and very basic instructions for making a "passive trap" which is a broadly similar to the trapping chamber of the Pee-Gee trap which CIMAG members use for Indian Mynas.
I provided BA's information to Chris Davey & Martin Butterfield and suggested that COG Committee might like to consider the issue and what might be done about Spotted Doves. Chris and I discussed the idea of having an intensive study over (say) a year.
I agree with other chat line contributors, that we should be concerned about perceived increases in populations and reports of possible breeding. Now is the time to act
I have also spoken to myna expert Chris Tidemann who thought they would probably be easier to trap than mynas.
Grateful any further views.

Attachment: 100101 STD queries.xls
Description: MS-Excel spreadsheet

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