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The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Laughing Dove

Afrikaans name: Rooiborsduifie

A Laughing Dove perced on a wall

Laughing Doves are common garden birds

Photo © Steven Herbert

Spilopelia senegalensis

The Laughing Dove is found throughout South Africa. In some areas of the country it is abundant and resident while in others it is more nomadic. In some areas it is a common visitor to gardens. The Laughing Dove is also found in most of sub-Saharan Africa as well as some of the Middle East and southern Asia.

Their call is bubbling and low-key and supposedly resembles a laughing noise.

Males are a big more brightly coloured than females. Juveniles are even paler and the chest markings are less distinct.

Laughing Doves mainly eat seeds and grain but will also eat some insects.

They build a flimsy nest in a tree. The female normally lays two eggs.

When courting the male approaches the female with his chest puffed out and he bobs his head up and down.

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References and further reading

A Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: O.P.M. Prozesky - Year Published: 1983 - Page: 142

A First Guide to South African Birds - 6th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1959 - Page: 115

A First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 115

Animals of the Kruger National Park - Author: G. de Graaff - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 80

Birds of Southern Africa - Kruger National Park - Author: Kenneth Newman - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 94

Birds of the South Western Cape - Author: Joy Frandsen - Year Published: - Page: 116

Birds of the Transvaal - Author: Tarboton, Kemp and Kemp - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 116

Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 37

Common Birds of the North Coast - Author: Bing Comrie - Year Published: 2005 - Page: 36

Everyone's Guide to South African Birds - Author: John Sinclair and John Mendelsohn - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 14

Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 100

Field Guide to the Cradle of Humankind - Author: B. Hilton-Barber & Prof. L. R. Berger - Year Published: 2004 - Page: 180

Geoff Lockwood's Garden Birds of Southern Africa - Author: Geoff Lockwood - Year Published: - Page: 34

Ian Sinclair's Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair - Year Published: 1988 - Page: 152

Newman's Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Year Published: 1984 - Page: 196

Newman's Birds of Southern Africa - 7th Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Year Published: 2000 - Page: 196

Newman's Garden Birds - Author: Ken Newman - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 32

Reader's Digest Illustrated Guide to the Game Parks and Nature Reserves of Southern Africa - 2nd edi - Author: Editor - Alan Duggan - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 410

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Dr. Austin Roberts - Year Published: 1949 - Page: 128

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 3rd Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 219

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Year Published: 1981 - Page: 228

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 308

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 305

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 216

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 224

Southern African Bird Names Explained - Author: Charles Clinning - Year Published: 1989 - Page: 136

The Birds of South Africa - Author: Hazel Stokes - Year Published: 1979 - Page: 22

The Doves, Parrots, Louries & Cuckoos of Southern Africa - Author: M.K. Rowan - Year Published: 1983 - Page: 84

Wildlife of Southern Africa - Author: Martin Withers and David Hosking - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 106

List of South African Birds

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