“2 turtle doves” have long played second fiddle to “a partridge in a pear tree” but are no less beautiful or endearing.
Turtle doves partner for life and every year, like many of our migrant bird species, travel thousands of miles to West Africa, their wintering grounds.
These once common summer migrants have become increasingly rare and are now included on the RSPB Red List of conservation concern.
Turtle doves need all our help now if we want their purring call to be heard across the countryside again each summer. Sign up to support @Natures_Voice campaign to #LetNatureSing & make sure government play their part in saving turtle doves. https://t.co/AOYyQeVYE9
— OperationTurtleDove (@SaveTurtleDoves) November 22, 2018
In the past these birds would have eaten seeds from wildflowers growing in arable fields and meadows across the country. But with the advent of more intensive, chemical-based farming methods wildflower numbers have suffered and with them turtle doves.
If you don’t already, consider having a patch or two in your garden where you can sow some wildflower seeds. Plants that form their diet include fumitory, knotgrass, chickweed, black medick, red and white clover, common vetch, birds foot trefoil. Our friends at the Wildflower Nursery will definitely be able to help if you need any advice and they offer a wide range of easy-to-plant plug plants to order, all peat and pesticide free.
The songbirds and music makers we love are at risk of going silent. But right now, we have a historic opportunity to shape a future in which wildlife can thrive right across the UK.
Our latest limited edition Christmas postcard collection celebrates the timeless, endearing Turtle Dove with a set of 10 turtle dove postcards which come in a beautiful presentation box and are printed on 400gsm card from sustainable sources.