How to Attract Doves: Simple Tips for Your Yard.

Attracting doves to your yard and keeping them around requires food and water sources. Place a bird feeder and bird bath in your yard to attract doves.

Having a beautiful and peaceful garden is not only pleasing to the eye, but it can also attract various bird species. Doves are one of the most popular birds that visit yards, and if you want to have them in your garden, there are easy steps you can follow to make your yard dove-friendly.

Planting flowers, trees, and shrubs that produce seeds, fruits, and berries will lure them in. Additionally, having a bird feeder with millet, sunflower seeds, and cracked corn will also attract doves. Providing a source of fresh water, whether it’s a bird bath or a simple bowl of water, is also essential to their presence. Follow these tips, and you’ll have a peaceful and lively garden.

How to Attract Doves: Simple Tips for Your Yard.


Understanding Doves

Attracting doves to your yard can be a rewarding experience, and it all starts with understanding their behavior patterns, diet, and characteristics. Doves are gentle birds, well-known for their soft cooing sounds and attractive plumes, and they make great additions to any yard, garden, or patio.

Below are some useful tips to help you attract more doves to your yard.

Different Types Of Doves And Their Characteristics

Doves belong to the columbidae family, which includes over 300 species. However, there are only a few species that you’re likely to encounter in your backyard.

  • Mourning doves – these are the most common species found in north america. They have a distinctive soft cooing sound and are brownish-gray in color. They typically weigh around 4-6 ounces.
  • White-winged doves – these doves have a more muted coo and are larger than mourning doves, weighing in at around 8-12 ounces. They have a grayish-brown body with white stripes on their wings.
  • Eurasian collared doves – these doves are known for their deep cooing sound. They have a grayish-brown body with a black ring around their neck. They are larger than mourning doves but smaller than white-winged doves.

Behavior Patterns: What Makes Doves Unique?

Doves have some unique behavior patterns that distinguish them from other backyard birds.

  • Doves are ground-feeders; they prefer to forage for food on the ground.
  • They have a calm and gentle nature. Doves are one of the few birds that will not intimidate or attack other birds or animals.
  • Doves mate for life and will often stay with their partner year-round.
  • They are very loyal to their nesting sites, often returning to the same spot year after year.

What Do Doves Eat?

Doves are primarily seed-eaters, but they will also consume some fruits and insects.

  • Offer doves a variety of seeds in feeders or scattered on the ground. Some of the seeds doves enjoy include safflower, sunflower, and millet.
  • Scatter cracked corn on the ground for doves to forage.
  • Offer fruit such as cherries or raisins by putting them in a tray feeder.
  • Doves need access to water for drinking and bathing, so consider adding a birdbath or shallow tray of water to your yard.

Attracting doves to your yard is easy and rewarding with the right knowledge. By understanding their behavior patterns, diet, and characteristics, you can create a welcoming environment for these gentle birds. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the peaceful sounds of doves cooing in your backyard.

Creating A Dove-Friendly Habitat

If you’re an avid birdwatcher and you want to invite doves to your yard, there are a few things you can do to make it a comfortable habitat for them. Below, we’ve put together some tips to help you create a dove-friendly habitat.

Selecting The Right Location For Your Birdhouse And Feeder

When you’re selecting a location for your birdhouse and feeder, it’s important to consider a few key factors. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Choose a location that is away from any potential predators like cats, raccoons, or other neighborhood pets
  • Place your birdhouse near trees or shrubs to provide a hiding place for doves and shelter from the sun and wind
  • Ensure the birdhouse is at a height of approximately 5-6 feet from the ground for convenience and safety

Choosing The Right Type Of Seed And Feeder

Doves prefer to feed on small seeds such as millet, tender cracked corn, and sunflower seeds. Here are some steps to follow when deciding on the type of seed and feeder for your yard:

  • Purchase a dove-specific feeder that is spacious and sturdy, and can accommodate a little skirmishing
  • You can also put the seeds on a platform rather than a feeder to make it even more comfortable
  • Fill the feeder with the type of seed that doves prefer to eat, and provide fresh seeds every week

Ensuring The Provision Of Fresh Water For Doves

Like any other creature, doves require fresh and clean water. Here are a few tips on how to ensure that your doves have access to fresh water:

  • Set up a birdbath or similar container in a shady, cool place so that the water remains clean and refreshingly cool
  • Ensure that there is a thin layer of water in the container so that the birds can stand around its edges or take shallow baths
  • Replace the water frequently to avoid algae growth and to keep it fresh and clean

Providing Shelter For Doves In Your Garden

Shelter is essential for doves as it provides them with protection from the elements, predators, and nesting conditions. Here are a few tips on how to provide shelter for doves:

  • Plant trees and shrubs around your yard and garden to provide nesting places
  • Add birdhouses to provide nesting sites for doves
  • Place some wooden or ceramic plates in the garden or yard for small doves to rest or nest

Now that you have these basic tips, you can go ahead and attract doves to your yard. Remember to have patience and good timing, as it may take some time before doves get accustomed to the habitat you’ve created for them.

Attracting Doves With Different Feeder Types

Doves are charming birds and they can bring joy and calmness to your yard. One of the best ways to attract doves is to set up feeding stations throughout your yard with different types of feeders. Here are some tips to attract doves with different feeder types.

Platform Feeders

  • Platform feeders are flat, open feeders that can attract many birds, including doves.
  • Place platform feeders on the ground or low enough so that the doves can easily access them.
  • Scatter seeds such as millet, cracked corn, sunflower seeds, and safflower seeds on the platform feeders.
  • Doves feel more comfortable when they can see the surroundings, but the platform should be hidden from predators.

Hopper Feeders

  • Hopper feeders are enclosed feeding stations that provide a larger capacity for seeds.
  • The hopper feeder fills from the top, and the seed trickles down into a catch tray.
  • Place the hopper feeders on the ground or low enough so that the doves can easily access them.
  • Fill hopper feeders with seeds such as millet, cracked corn, sunflower seeds, and safflower seeds, as these seeds are popular with doves.

Tube Feeders

  • Tube feeders are long, tubular feeders that dispense seeds through small ports.
  • Select a tube feeder that has large ports to attract doves.
  • Fill tube feeders with large seeds such as sunflower seeds, as doves prefer them.
  • Make sure the tube feeder is sturdy and easy to clean, as birds can be messy eaters.

Suet Feeders

  • Suet feeders are mesh cages or wire baskets that hold suet cakes.
  • Suet cakes are made of animal fat, seeds, berries, and nuts, and provide high energy and nutrition for birds.
  • Doves do not eat suet, but you can attract other bird species with it.
  • Place suet feeders high enough so that larger birds like woodpeckers can easily access them.

By providing different types of feeders, you can attract doves and other bird species to your yard, creating a serene and inviting environment.

Tricks And Tips For Attracting Doves

Attracting doves to your backyard can be a rewarding experience. These gentle birds are not only beautiful to watch but also provide a peaceful atmosphere. Here are some tips and tricks to effectively attract doves to your yard.

Using Decoys To Attract Doves

One effective way to attract doves is by using decoys. Here’s how:

  • Place a dove decoy in your backyard to attract the attention of other doves.
  • Position the decoy in a visible location, on a fence post or a branch, to make it more noticeable.
  • Add some birdseed around the decoy to lure doves.

The Importance Of Cleanliness

Keeping your backyard clean is vital to attracting doves and maintaining their presence.

  • Regularly clean the bird feeder and the surrounding area to prevent the build-up of old food that can attract undesirable wildlife.
  • Keep your yard free from debris that can accumulate in gutters, on the ground, or in the bushes.
  • Use a birdseed that doesn’t leave a mess, as this will make it less likely that harmful wildlife will be attracted to your yard.

The Appropriate Time Of Day To Put Out Food

Feeding doves can be done at various times of the day, but it’s essential to choose the right time.

  • Doves are most active during the early morning and late afternoon, so putting out food during these times will attract them.
  • Avoid putting food out during the hottest part of the day, as this will increase the likelihood of attracting rodents and other pests.
  • Start by putting out small amounts of food, and if the doves start to visit, gradually increase the amount.

How To Deal With Undesirable Wildlife

When you invite doves to your yard, it’s important to be aware of the possibility of attracting undesirable wildlife.

  • Use appropriate bird feeders that can be accessed only by birds, preventing other animals from accessing the food.
  • Don’t leave food out for prolonged periods, as this increases the chances of attracting rodents and other wildlife.
  • Consider placing fencing around areas where you feed birds to keep other animals out.

By using these simple tricks and tips, you can effectively attract doves to your yard and enjoy their presence. Happy birdwatching!

Frequently Asked Questions Of How To Attract Doves To Your Yard And Keep Them Around

How Do I Attract Doves To My Yard?

To attract doves, provide them with food such as seeds, grains, and fruits. You can also put up bird feeders and birdbaths, as doves like to drink and bathe frequently.

What Kind Of Bird Feed Do Doves Prefer?

Doves prefer to eat seeds, grains, and berries. Millet, cracked corn, safflower seeds, and sunflower seeds are some of the best foods to attract doves to your yard.

How Can I Keep Doves Around My Yard?

To keep doves around, make sure there is plenty of food and water available. Also, avoid using pesticides or chemicals in your yard, as this could harm the birds.

Do Doves Build Nests In Yards?

Yes, doves will build nests in trees, bushes, and other areas of your yard. They typically build simple nests out of twigs and other materials, which they may reuse year after year.

How Can I Protect My Doves From Predators?

To protect your doves from predators such as cats and hawks, provide them with cover in the form of bushes and trees. You can also put up birdhouses or nesting boxes to provide shelter. Additionally, keeping a clean yard can help to discourage predators from visiting.


After reading this article, you should now be well equipped with the knowledge you need to attract doves to your yard and keep them around for years to come. Remember that doves are very easy to care for and can add a relaxing atmosphere to your yard.

With just a few adjustments to your yard and some simple additions, you can create an excellent habitat for doves and enjoy their presence throughout the year. Remember, different types of doves may require different types of food and shelter, so be sure to research each variety before making any decisions.

With a little bit of time and effort, you can attract these beautiful birds to your yard and enjoy all the benefits that they have to offer. Happy birding!

Md Atiqul Hakim

AtiQ's blog, "Wild Bird Lady," is a treasure trove of insights, tips, and captivating stories. Join him on a fascinating journey of exploration, discovery, and celebration of our avian neighbors through engaging articles and breathtaking photographs.

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