Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2003-23

Common name:

Eurasian Collared-Dove

Scientific name: Streptopelia decaocto
Date: 21, 31 May and 4 Jun 2003
Time: ~ 9:00 to 10:00 AM, all three times
Length of time observed: Altogether ~ 15 minutes
Number: 2
Age: adult
Location: Salem Lake -- Salem, Utah
County: Utah
Elevation: ~ 4,700 ft.
Distance to bird: ~ 75 yards
Optical equipment: 8 x 42 Bausch & Lomb Elite binoculars, Kowa 20 x 60 82mm scope
Weather: Clear all three days
Light Conditions: Sunny
Detailed description of bird: This was a large, heavy looking dove compared the Mourning Dove.  The back and wings were gray, becoming lighter on the belly and breast.  From underneath, the tail had a broad white terminal band and gray undertail coverts and vent area with  black markings on the sides between the terminal band and the undertail coverts. The nape had a horizontal crescent-shaped black mark which extented to the sides of the neck. (see photos)
Song or call & method of delivery: none that I could hear
Behavior: The first two time, I saw a single bird which was sitting on a wire near a telephone pole -- same pole both times.  The last time when I saw a pair, they were in the same place as the first two sightings, but flew together from the telephone wires to some large trees and then back to the a different part of the wires -- they were much more active than the first two sightings of the single bird.
Habitat: Area around Salem Lake in the middle of Salem city.
Similar species and
how were they eliminated:
The smaller and thinner Ringed Turtle-Dove is much lighter overall and has much smaller black marks on the tail.  From underneath, there is little contract between the terminal band of the tail and the undertail coverts.
Previous experience with this & similar species: I've seen the Eurasian Collared-Dove several times in Utah County at River Lane and I've seen a Ringed Turtle-Dove sitting in a tree about 5 feet away while visiting a rest home in Provo -- a very tame bird.
References consulted: The Sibley Field Guide to Birds
Description from: From memory refreshed by the photos
Observer: Milton Moody
Observer's address: 2795 Indian Hills Drive, Provo, UT  84604
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified
this bird:
The first two times I was with large groups of birders (over thirty the first time and about 20 the second time).   Among the birders observing the bird were Dennis Shirley, Tuula Rose, Leena Rogers and Wade Miller.
Date prepared: 11 Jun 2003
Additional material: photos
Additional comments: