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Species (Streptopelia turtur, family Columbidae) of migratory European pigeon that winters in northern Africa. It is about 11 in. (28 cm) long and has a reddish brown body, blue-gray head, and white-tipped tail. A ground feeder, it eats prodigious amounts of small seeds. The name is applied to other temperate and tropical Old World Streptopelia species of slim, fast-flying game birds. The ringed turtledove, or ringdove, has feral populations in California and Florida, U.S.; the laughing and spotted doves have also been introduced outside their native habitats.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on turtledove, visit Britannica.com.