basic information

European Turtle Dove

Streptopelia turtur (Linnaeus, 1758)

Обыкновенная горлица | Кәдімгі түркептері

Sorbulak lake, Almaty region
© Vassiliy Fedorenko


Breeds in almost all parts of Kazakhstan except Northern Kazakhstan and waterless deserts. Please see the detailed distribution in the section Subspecies.


Common, in places numerous breeding migrant. Inhabits mostly various deciduous forests, or rare pine forests, shrub spots in open lands, shelterbelts, gardens and forested villages and towns. The necessary condition for the breeding is the existence of water source in close vicinity. Arrives in the end of April – mid-May by flocks of several dozen but sometimes to one hundred birds. Migration at Chokpak Pass finishes in mid-May. Breeds by separate pairs not far one of another. Nest is built from thin twigs on the tree or bush at height 0.5-6 m (rare 15 m) above the ground. Clutch of 2 eggs is laid in mid-May to mid-July. Both parents incubate clutch for 13-14 days and later feed juveniles which fledge at age about 20 days old. Rears two or probably three brood per season in southern regions, but one only in northern ones. Re-nesting after loss of first clutch is common. Flying juveniles recorded from end of June. Autumn migration begins in end of July – August. Adults and juveniles migrate in the same flocks of 10-25 to sometimes 200-300 birds (on Mangyshlak), together with Oriental Turtle Dove often. Latest birds recorded in end September – early October.


Streptopelia turtur turtur (Linnaeus,1758)

    Description. General colour darker than arenicola. Borders of scapulars and upper wing coverts are buffy-brownish, darker than arenicola; rump and upper tail coverts are dark-grey, craw and breast are lighter than arenicola.
    Distribution. Breeds in northern part of Kazakhstan, in south to coast of Caspian Sea, lower reaches of Turgay river and Zaysan depression. Migrates through Ural valley mostly, in rest territory occurs very rare. Once in autumn observed in Kurgaldzhino (September 1948).

Streptopelia turtur arenicola (Hartert, 1894)

    Description. General colour is lighter than turtur. Borders of scapulars and upper wing coverts are brownish-buffy lighter than turtur; rump and upper tail coverts are light grey; craw and breast are darker than turtur.
    Distribution. Breeds in southern part of Kazakhstan, in north to Emba valley, lower reaches of Turgay river, Betpak-Dala and Zaysan depression. In said area occurs on migration.


Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999. В.К.Рябицев. "Птицы Урала, Приуралья и Западной Сибири". Екатеринбург. Изд-во Уральского университета, 2000.



Streptopelia turtur turtur
Streptopelia turtur arenicola
(Hartert, 1894)

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