help with doves...


9 Years
Sep 5, 2010
My dad has always enjoyed watching my pigeons fly when I turn my rollers out. He's never really wanted to keep any birds of his own tho.

Today, he expressed interest in keeping some breed of dove. Something the diamond doves or maybe some coppernecks or greenwings.

I KNOW pigeons...but I don't know doves.

Can doves be turned out like pigeons and be expected to hang around? Do doves need a heat lamp for winter, being that some of them originate from tropical climates? What kind of structures do you dove folks use? I see a lot of them in finch size cages, but that ain't how we keep our birds around here. Id like to build them something nice but don't know what they need...

Can someone point me in the right direction? I would like to surprise him with something from the Louisville show in a few weeks but I also wanna make sure I got good housing for it also.

Thank yall!
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9 Years
Jul 7, 2010
Shady Hills, FL
Doves do not stick around so if you let them out they will leave and die. My dove is kept in a white parrot cage. I do let them out to fly a little but that is about it. I know that you cannot put them with pigeons because they will attack them. My white dove was named Floyd and he was 18 years old when I gave him a wife, he had quite a few babies and he dropped dead in his cage. He was healthy as a horse ands never a sick day in his life. My sister in law had him for 8 years and gave him to me and I had him for almost 12 years I still have his wife LOL


10 Years
Jul 26, 2009
I bought 4 diamond doves a couple of months ago, and they are wonderful. Sweet, calm little birds, very musical (my mother says they sound like flutes playing).

But, all of the literature I've seen says they should never be exposed to temperatures lower than 60 degrees F. They are from the subtropical to tropical parts of Australia, so that makes sense. Definitely NOT something you would keep outdoors in OK in the wintertime.

Ringneck doves can be kept in sheltered aviaries outdoors in the warmer parts of the US, from what I've read. I don't know if OK counts as "warmer" though, it can get pretty rough some winters.

If he wants to keep them indoors, you need something equivalent in size to a cockatiel/small parrot cage for a pair of diamond doves. They do seem to enjoy flying about a bit -- I have my pairs in medium/large parrot cages, and several times a day they take turns flying/hovering in tight little circles in the cages, which are large enough to allow them to do this.

No sign of any eggs yet, but one of them keeps building and rebuilding a nest out of shreds of paper and some clean pine needles I've given them.

Mary Of Exeter

10 Years
Apr 10, 2009
Rowan County, NC
I have kept a few pigeons with my ringneck doves and they are fine, as long as they have plenty of space and perches/boxes.
Doves cannot be let out to fly outside, but can fly around in the house. Depending on what kind of doves you are getting, they may need a heat lamp. Ringnecks do not, they just need some wide perches so they can lay on their toes to keep them warm. We keep our doves in a loft like the pigeons, but a rabbit hutch is fine if you just want to keep a pair (or two, if you split it in half).


13 Years
May 23, 2009
Ringnecks can be kept outdoors in your area as long as they have shelter from rain and wind, flat roosts, and are acclimated gradually to the climate. For example, it would be a bad idea to buy some birds that are used to living indoors and stick them in an outside pen in December!

We have a pair of hand tame ringnecks that "free range" in our indoor bird room. Sweet birds, and their cooing and laughing calls are very pleasant to the ear.


10 Years
Sep 29, 2009
The coppernecks are about the same size as a ringneck, so if that size is acceptable I would go with a RN instead to start with, they are much cheaper and generally hardier.


the bird is the word
11 Years
Sep 14, 2008
Adair Co., KY
I haven't had ringneck doves for long, but I love them so much! They are the sweetest little birds, and I love their coos
It did shock me a bit the first time I heard one of them 'laugh', I was inside the barn (doves' pen is outside the room I was in) and heard it...I kept saying 'What the !!!! is that noise??' Now that I've got it figured out though, it's pretty neat too

Just make sure that if you get ringnecks and plan to keep them outside that you get some that are USED to being outside. I got some at a poultry show a few weeks ago and lost one the other day when it was in the 30's at night for a few days

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