Bird ID from description

To: 'CanberraBirds email list' <>
Subject: Bird ID from description
From: Philip Veerman <>
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2023 04:52:28 +0000
Can't really be sure at all from this, but it is likely to be a pigeon. My 
suggestion is the much more likely Spotted Turtle-Dove (even juveniles that 
don't have the black patch with white spots on the neck), which matches those 
features. Have you checked that one in a book and considered that one? Brown 
Cuckoo-Dove does not have that white in the tail and I don't know that they 
come to the ground.


-----Original Message-----
From: Canberrabirds  
On Behalf Of 
Sent: Tuesday, 7 March, 2023 3:04 PM
To: CanberraBirds email list
Subject: Bird ID from description

Hello All

Sylvia has sent several emails to the COG office with descriptions of 
bird visitors to her Charnwood garden. If you can help her with an ID 
please contact her.


Margaret Robertson

"I've seen groups of a brown bird recently using my bird bath (upper 
Charnwood). They appear to be the brown cuckoo-dove. Has anyone else 
noticed them in this region? But, consulting Simpson, they don't mention 
these birds as having white parts under the wings and tail when they are 
spread, which the ones I see have.

The birds I have, coming in groups of 3-4, are nothing like Common Mynas 
which have head markings and white on belly. They are larger and look 
like doves, with small head, slim neck, quite a large body and longish 
tail. When wings and tail are not spread they are more or less an even 
brown all over. I haven’t seen them before and realise they have come 
farther west than usual. I’ve seen them in the summer and this month. 
One time they lay on their fronts on the ground after bathing, beaks to 
one side, and spread their wings and tails so you could see the white, 
which you only see as a flash in flight. I don’t have a camera but might 
try to do something, hoping they won’t leave. It is like a forest here 
with lots of trees and shrubs in gardens and public spaces like green 
belts (special design of Charnwood).

I thought your group would like to know about this. I cannot think what 
other bird they would be and they might have come to Canberra for the 
first time.

When the birds were lying on the ground it was on gravel and I noticed 
one was pecking at it. Then I read they sometimes eat gravel. I have a 
large mulberry tree and plum tree with fruit nearby."

This is the email announcement and discussion list of the Canberra 
Ornithologists Group.
Emails posted to the list that exceed 2 MB (2,000 kB) in size, including 
attachments, will be rejected.
All emails distributed via the list are archived at It is a 
condition of list membership that you agree to your contributions being 

Canberrabirds mailing list

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the Canberra Ornithologists Group mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the list contact David McDonald, list manager, phone (02) 6231 8904 or email . If you can not contact David McDonald e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU