Dove - Symbol of Love and Peace

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by manganite on Flickr

The dove is a universal symbol of peace and love. Every nation and every culture has viewed this bird with a fondness close to worship. But unbeknownest to many the pigeon and the dove and pretty much the same bird. (Didn't know that you were swearing to the symbol of peace did you?)

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by doncon402 on Flickr
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by Momba on Flickr
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by AlexandraPhotos on Flickr
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by Momba on Flickr
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by Stavenn on Flickr
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by Bahman Farzad on Flickr
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The doves that we most commonly refer to as such come in a variety of birds. They are overall a hardy bird and easy to breed though many of the smaller varieties are high-strung and should be raised in an aviary instead of a standard size bird cage.

Doves are monogamous and have a very beautiful courtship. In fact the affection that they give each other during mating is so unique in the animal world that that is why the dove became the symbol of love and peace.

Diamond Dove

The diamond dove is one of the smallest known doves and is native to Australia. It is part of the group of doves commonly referred to as Turtledoves in Europe. It has a long tail and generally gets to just over 7 inches long and only a mere 1.5 ounces in weight. It can live up to 10 years if handled properly. This is one of those breeds that is not a good choice for a bird cage. They like bigger areas to hide from anything making them nervous and enjoy the company of other birds such as canaries.

Mourning Dove

The mourning dove is also known as the Carolina Dove and is found in North and Central America. It is the most hunted of all the doves though in many areas they are protected as a song bird due to their soft "cooing". They can get 12 inches long and weigh about 5 ounces. These are the ones you'll hear outside your window on a sunny day. Most of these are found in the wild and not one of the most popular ones to have as pets.

Ringneck Dove

The Ringneck dove is the one you'll see the most often as a household pet. It can get to 12 inches and live on average 10-15 years though there are some documented cases of the birds living into their 20's. You can find a variety of colors in this species. More and more breeders are developing new colors to the beautiful array of doves. Looking for a dove as a pet? Then check these out first.

White Dove

These are the most well-known of all doves. The white dove which is the universal symbol of love and peace is highly intelligent which is one reason many magicians use them in their acts. They actually are a Ringneck dove so they also make great pets.

Others

There are so many other types of doves/pigeons to list that it would take an entire book. But you can also find the Turtledove in Europe, Ground Dove in the southern United States, and the Inca Dove in the southwestern United States.

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by Scandblue on Flickr
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by sandman on Flickr

Poetry

Since doves are the ultimate symbol of love and peace, it is not surprising that they end up as the subjects of poems and incorporated into ceremonies such as weddings.

Louisa May Alcott wrote the following poem that is a wonderful example of how these birds have been a part of many people's lives.

MY DOVES

by: Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)

OPPOSITE my chamber window,On the sunny roof, at play,High above the city's tumult,Flocks of doves sit day by day.Shining necks and snowy bosoms,Little rosy, tripping feet,Twinkling eyes and fluttering wings,Cooing voices, low and sweet,-- Graceful games and friendly meetings,Do I daily watch and see.For these happy little neighborsAlways seem at peace to be.On my window-ledge, to lure them,Crumbs of bread I often strew,And, behind the curtain hiding,Watch them flutter to and fro. Soon they cease to fear the giver,Quick are they to feel my love,And my alms are freely takenBy the shyest little dove.In soft flight, they circle downward,Peep in through the window-pane;Stretch their gleaming necks to greet me,Peck and coo, and come again. Faithful little friends and neighbors,For no wintry wind or rain,Household cares or airy pastimes,Can my loving birds restrain.Other friends forget, or linger,But each day I surely knowThat my doves will come and leave hereLittle footprints in the snow. So, they teach me the sweet lesson,That the humblest may giveHelp and hope, and in so doing,Learn the truth by which we live;For the heart that freely scattersSimple charities and loves,Lures home content, and joy, and peace,Like a soft-winged flock of doves.


Pigeons are Doves, Too!

Now the next time you are walking down the street and you feel a little gift fall on your shoulder or in your hair, instead of letting the four-letter words fly and give censorable gestures to the sweet birds above remember that it was given out of love and you are cursing peace and love :)

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Comments 19 comments

BDazzler profile image

BDazzler 7 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

Hey RGraf, I've been enjoying your recent hubs! Haven't had a lot to say about 'em, but they are appreciated!


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin Author

Thank you, BDazzler. These words mean a lot to me today. Guess I needed a little encouragement.


countrywomen profile image

countrywomen 7 years ago from Washington, USA

WOW!! That is really a nice tribute to these wonderful birds. I always admired Doves, Parrots and Peacocks. I like the poem too and the videos were really nice. Thumbs up for a sweet hub.


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin Author

Thank you CW. It was fun to write and read the beautiful poetry.


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

I went to a funeral of an elderly lady I used to visit as a child the other day. What was lovely was that her daughter and grandchildren released three white doves outside the crematorium afterwards. Very touching :)


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin Author

I had never thought of using them in funerals. That had to have been beautiful.


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Well ,it made me and many others cry, so I guess so. It was like watching her spirit fly free.


Eddie Perkins 7 years ago

Rebecca,

This is very good – very informative.  That’s why I like to read your material.  I didn’t know I could learn anymore than I already knew till I started reading your hubs.

But I do have one question.  Is there a difference in cursing peace and love and cursing the symbol of peace of love? :))))

Thank you so much for the hub. ~ eddie


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin Author

Eddie, Thanks again for your supportive comments.

Very good question. I don't think anyone realizes that there is no difference.


shamelabboush profile image

shamelabboush 7 years ago

This is very romantic and beautiful! I love those cute birds...

Thumps up!


justmesuzanne profile image

justmesuzanne 7 years ago from Texas

This is very nice and valuable information. I am hoping to attract doves to my yard this summer. I hate it when dove hunting season comes and local hunters prove their "manhood" by slaughtering these innocents by the dozens. They will be safe if they nest in my yard.


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 7 years ago from Upstate New York

Good content, wonderful pictures. I enjoyed reading this; thank you!


G.L.A. profile image

G.L.A. 6 years ago from Arizona

Great!! doves are my passion, and I loved your hub!


RKHenry profile image

RKHenry 6 years ago from Your neighborhood museum

I liked this hub. Thanks


DustinsMom profile image

DustinsMom 6 years ago from USA

I had no idea there were so many types of doves. How very interesting. I love the sound they make. So peaceful.


skye2day profile image

skye2day 6 years ago from Rocky Mountains

Rgraf This is a Blessed hub. Thank you for sharing the awesome info and the Pictures's are wowzer. In the Book Acts the Dove ascended down and landed on the shoulder of Jesus Christ, symbolizing the Holy Spirit. Since he is Love it is no surprise the dove represents love n peace.

I love how you tied up the hub with the Poetry by Louisa May Alcott. Very Nice.

I think the Holy Spirit was moving on you RGraf. This touched me in the heart. LOVE IT The video 'my doves' awesome. I enjoyed it, great background music. Kinda like being at a symphony. (-; Are they your dove's?The 2 dove's in the dog dish, precious.

Come over and visit me for a read sometime. 'Ready to fight the fight' is a new hub.

Sending a virtual hug RGraf (-; In Love and Peace.


resha 5 years ago

fantastic


MarkMAllen15 profile image

MarkMAllen15 5 years ago

Wonderful hub. I love white doves.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

This was very sweet, with some lovely pictures. They are adorable.

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