Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images
- This species is widely distributed in places with trees, groves or woods and especially in cultivated areas. It is less common in mountainous regions.
- The wood pigeon feeds mainly when on the ground. Its diet is composed almost exclusively of vegetable material, including leguminous seeds, cereals, acorns, berries, small fruits, young green shoots (mainly cruciferous ones).
- Pairs form in late winter. Small flocks are established during the summer and frequent cultivated regions. Populations reproducing in France are partly sedentary.
- Numerous migrants from Northern and Central Europe fly across France in September but mainly in October. They pass the Pyrenees to spend the winter in Spain or Northern Africa. The return migration occurs in February-March.
- Very large flocks of wood pigeons, which are present throughout the winter in the major crop regions of France, come from countries that do not extend so far in the North (Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands), the size of the migrations being small owing to food availability on the way.
Egg-laying starts in April-May and 2 eggs are laid. A 2nd brood usually appears in early summer and there is sometimes a 3rd in August-September.
Damage is caused by large flocks during the winter.
- Young plants of winter rape (*) , pea crops (seedlings and mature peas) (*) as well as sunflower crops (mainly seedlings) are devoured.
Cereal and maize seedlings are attacked and plantlets are cut off.
HYPPZ on line : Species (scientific name), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.