The ring-necked dove is also known as the Cape turtle dove and the half-collared dove.
Perfectly serene and calm doves, they are exceptional bird companions for people who want someone gentle, elegant, and easygoing in their life.
The ring-necked dove is called so because it has a defining black ring around its nape.
The species’ binomial nomenclature is streptopelia risoria.
The ring-necked dove is a very gentle dove. Not only can they be hand-tamed, but they’re also of a very easygoing nature. They coo in a very sweet voice and you can be sure that every family member is going to be enchanted by their presence.
It’s safe to say that the ring-necked doves are the most popular pet doves among US pet owners. More often than not, whenever someone asks a breeder, a fellow pet owner, or an online source about which dove to get in a particular situation (like for an apartment lifestyle, or for a big house and a joint family), the answer turns out to be a ring-necked dove. They’re simply versatile.
The ring-necked dove hails from Africa. However, it’s very easy to spot wild ring-necks in certain Southern states like Florida and Georgia. In fact, wherever they’re found, they’re quite abundant and popular with the locals.
These have colors ranging from fawn to brown.
The ring-necked dove is a small-sized bird that makes a very good home companion. Usually, a ring-necked dove will grow up to be about 12 inches. In certain rare cases, it can grow taller too.
A ring-necked dove can live up to 10 years. And although they’re technically birds that don’t like to be touched, they’re quite okay with it if you take care of them since they are babies.
The ring-necked dove is quite the chatterer. However, they don’t create a ruckus or a lot of noise. Their cooing is both gentle and sweet.
Ring-necked doves have a long history of being human companions. In fact, they have been domesticated for thousands of years. There has to be a reason behind that, right? Absolutely!
Their overall behavior around the owners is very gentle and non-intrusive. And at the same time, caring for them is both easy and a lovely affair.
A ring-necked dove is quite robust and resilient to most infections and diseases that plague otherwise fancier pet birds. That’s also the reason why you should go for a ring-necked dove if you don’t have a lot of time to devote to your pet bird.
That being said, you still need to pay attention to the following details when you’re getting ready to have a ring-necked dove as a pet.
Always keep in mind that doves have a pretty inexhaustible mating mentality. It will be very hard for any owner to keep them from mating and producing more offspring. Take additional care there. If you allow your ring-necked dove to mate year-round, they will be constantly exhausted. It’s usually recommended to take months-long breaks between clutches.
Now, as doves don’t climb up cage bars (like parrots, for example), a ring-necked dove in captivity will require a cage that is wide. They will need to stay fit and for that, they need to fly back and forth, walk a little bit, etc. As vertical movement is not an exercise option, make sure there’s enough horizontal space for your little bird.
Doves love to bath and the ring-necked dove is no exception. Make sure you present yours with lukewarm water every week or so for them to take a complete bath. Gently spraying water will also work.
Doves, much like chickens, canaries, finches, etc., eat their seeds whole. Any bird that does so needs grit or sand in its diet. This allows them to digest the whole seeds. This is in contrary to parrots – parrots should never have grit in their diet because they eat food differently and also have strong gastric muscles to digest food.
So, make sure there’s enough grit in your ring-necked dove’s daily diet. You can further improve their diet by mixing in several different types of grit, calcium supplements, etc.
Behavior and nature
The ring-necked dove is a very gentle pet. There’s no way that you run the risk of a bite, attack, pecking, or any sort of nippy behavior.
Ring-necked doves are pretty easygoing and love to stay in pairs. When they have clutches, they can have them anywhere.
However, it’s equally important for the owners to be respectful, calm, and gentle around the doves just as they are around others. With doves, it’s a two-way companionship.
Many parrot owners intentionally choose doves sometimes or recommend them simply because there are less noise and screeching involved in general. Actually, there’s no noise involved.
A ring-necked dove coos much like a typical pigeon. Sometimes, they can get loud but it’s rare and usually has an underlying reason.
The rest of the time, you’ll have a pet ring-necked dove who coos almost consistently. This sound is far from being irritating but if it’s all the while, you might begin to dislike it. In either case, keep them busy and you’ll have an easier life with them.
Doves are usually purchased in pairs or groups.
A couple of ring-necked doves can cost you anywhere from $20 to $80. Sometimes, a local breeder who has had a lot of doves recently can also sell a pair in as low as $10.
Their high mating frequency is precisely what makes them really good for learning breeding or beginning to breed birds as a hobby.