Turtle dove at last

In May I bemoaned the non-appearance of any turtle doves at Otmoor RSPB reserve in Oxfordshire.

Three months later I returned with my friends Marika Kovacs and Arthur Lee.  I realised that an August afternoon is not a good time for seeing birds, but it was lovely to walk around and there were plenty of lapwings, some reed and sedge warblers singing, and a family of bullfinches in the hedgerow.  We passed the notices about the turtle doves and a roped-off area where seed has been thrown down for them, but I knew there had been few sightings this year.

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Just before we turned back to the car park I saw a dove on the telegraph wires, but it was against the light and I suspected it was a collared dove.  It flew off.  A minute or two later we heard the unmistakable call of the turtle dove.  Full of hope we retraced our steps to the oak tree, where I have seen them in the past.

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The turtle dove was in the tree on the left.

There it was, its attractive brown feathers showing clearly.  I am sorry that the photo below does not do it justice.

TD circled

Turtle dove circled

So I have been able to give a tick to turtle dove on my list again this year.  On an unlikely August afternoon, Otmoor came up trumps again.

About campaignerkate

I am the general secretary of the Open Spaces Society and I campaign for public access, paths and open spaces in town and country.
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4 Responses to Turtle dove at last

  1. Geoff Mullett says:

    Such a pleasure to hear them, let alone see one. They have such a hard time dodging the ‘hunters’ in the Med.
    We visited a village near Scarborough in June and had good views of two pairs near the road. Also took a short video. Pity I can’t include with this post.
    Geoff

  2. Hi Geoff, thanks – why not put on you-tube and paste the link here?

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