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Help develop a Bird ID tool!

Inca Dove

Columbina inca ORDER: COLUMBIFORMES FAMILY: COLUMBIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

A small tropical dove of arid areas, the Inca Dove has become a common resident of urban areas of the Southwest. It has expanded its breeding range northward and southward, but has remained attracted to towns and cities.

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Appearance

Doves
Doves
Typical Voice

Adult Description

  • Small dove.
  • Light brown body.
  • Dark brown feather edging gives a scaly appearance.
  • Long tail with square tip and white outer tail feathers.
  • Rufous in wings visible in flight.

Immature Description

Juvenile similar to adult, but less scaly.

Range Map Help

Inca Dove Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

Field MarksHelp

  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Small brown dove
    • Distinctive scaly pattern throughout
    • Long tail
    • © Stephen Ramirez, Texas, January 2010
  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Small, scaly dove
    • Light brown overall
    • Long, square-tipped tail
    • © Tripp Davenport, Big Springs Ranch, Real County, Texas, June 2009
  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Small, slender dove
    • Distinctive scaly pattern
    • Long tail with white outer feathers
    • © Greg Page, High Island, Texas, June 2010
  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Petite, pale brown dove
    • Scaly overall
    • Long, square-tipped tail
    • © Mikael Behrens, Austin, Texas, August 2008
  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Small, pale brown dove
    • Bright rufous on under-wings
    • Long tail
    • © Greg Page, South Llano River State Park, Texas, May 2010
  • Adult

    Inca Dove

    Adult
    • Small, pale-brown dove
    • Distinct scaly pattern
    • Long, square-tipped tail
    • © Stephen Ramirez, Texas, February 2010
  • Adults

    Inca Dove

    Adults
    • Small, pale brown doves
    • Often seen "fluffed up" in cold weather
    • Long, square-tipped tails with white outer feathers
    • © Stephen Ramirez, Texas, March 2010

Similar Species

  • Adult

    Mourning Dove

    Adult
    • Larger and stockier than Inca Dove
    • No scaling
    • Tapering, pointed tail
    • Black mark on cheeks
    • © Douglas K. Davis, Mosinee, Wisconsin, February 2007
  • Adult

    Common Ground-Dove

    Adult
    • Smaller and stockier than Inca Dove
    • Short tail
    • Scaly pattern only on head and neck, not on body
    • Spots on wings
    • © Mark Eden/GBBC, Florida, February 2011