Birda Logo
Species Guide
A photo of a Eared Dove (Zenaida auriculata)
Eared Dove

Eared Dove

Zenaida auriculata

The Eared Dove, known scientifically as Zenaida auriculata, is a bird of modest size, measuring approximately 24 cm in length and tipping the scales at around 112 grams. Its plumage is primarily olive-brown on the upper parts, with distinctive black spots adorning its wings. The head is graced with a grey crown, a black line behind the eye, and blue-black lower ear coverts, which lend the bird its common name. The underparts exhibit a vinous hue, while the tail is elegantly tipped with cinnamon. Males are typically more vibrant than females, with the latter presenting a duller appearance. Immature birds are greyish-brown and exceedingly dull, with pale barring. The bill of this species is black, and the legs are a dark red.

Identification Tips

When attempting to identify the Eared Dove, look for the black line behind the eye and the blue-black marks on the lower ear coverts. The long, wedge-shaped tail and the cinnamon tip are also key characteristics. The male's brighter plumage and the female's duller coloration can help distinguish between the sexes.


The Eared Dove thrives in open areas such as savannahs and cultivated lands. It has adapted well to human presence, often seen perched on wires and telephone posts near towns or feeding near beach resorts.


This dove is a resident breeder across South America, from Colombia to southern Argentina and Chile, and on the offshore islands from the Grenadines southwards. It is also found in Trinidad and Tobago, where it may be a relatively recent arrival.


The Eared Dove is a sociable bird, particularly when not foraging for food. It forms flocks, especially during migration or when gathering at communal roosts. Its flight is characterized by high speed and directness, with regular beats and occasional sharp flicks of the wings. The breeding display involves a steep climb followed by a semicircular glide back to the original perch.

Song & Calls

The call of the Eared Dove is a deep and soft "oo-ah-oo," which can be heard across its range.


Breeding occurs almost continuously, given sufficient food and habitat. The Eared Dove constructs a small stick nest in a tree and lays two white eggs, which hatch in 12–14 days, with fledging occurring after another 9 days.

Diet and Feeding

The diet of the Eared Dove consists mainly of seeds and grains sourced from the ground. It can become an agricultural pest, feeding on crops such as wheat, rice, sorghum, maize, and soybeans when in season. Echinochloa colona and Croton jacobinensis are significant seed sources, and the diet may be supplemented with animal matter like caterpillars, insect pupae, aphids, and snails.

Conservation status

The Eared Dove is currently listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, indicating that it is not at immediate risk of population decline or extinction.

App logo
Birda is a birdwatching app and community aimed at curious people who want to deepen their connection with nature.

Eared Doves on Birda


More Pigeons, Doves

Birda Logo

Your birdwatching journey like never before

Connect with nature in minutes
Take a walk, look out of the window and log the birds that you see. Feel good about those little connections to nature.
Discover the joy of birding
Find new birding spots, see more birds, share and celebrate with a like-minded community of nature lovers.
Play your part in saving nature
Logging your birding sightings and sessions turns into positive action for our planet. Every sighting counts.

Birda Blog

What Our Birders Say
Ideal Birdwatch Companion
Simply adds to the enjoyment of my birdwatching and helps me record what I’ve seen.
Great bird recording
For a while I’ve been trying to find an app to easily record bird lists and day out and struggled to find one that I like. Birda is great for this, straightforward and a great community!
Alex J
Friendly and helps to identify birds
Great birding app, good for logging your sightings, also has nice species guide. I'm enjoying the social aspect more than I expected, everyone seems friendly and helps to identify unknown birds. Good mix of newbies and experienced users.
Carl B
Helped me to identify more birds
Love this app and has helped me to identify more birds. The challenges and badges are great for keeping the motivation going to get out and keep birding.
Terrific App for Birders
Downloaded Birda around the time my interest in birding was sparked, and it has been a terrific app to help me (1) share my experience, (2) document my sightings, and (3) learn more about birds in general. That said, I also believe Birda is a fantastic app for birders of all experience levels. Great community!
Awesome App
I really enjoy using this app! It is such a friendly community of bird-lovers who are happy to help if I need ID advice. It’s been great motivation to get outdoors and go birding more! 10/10 😍😍
Great app for beginner twitchers
I’ve had a passion of photographing birds for a long time now but have only just gotten into proper birdwatching, and this app is brilliant for those just getting started. There is a great sense of community among users and the app is very easy to use and professional. Awesome app altogether
Fantastic App
This is a really lovely app, for everyone interested in birds - from newbies to old hands. There is a very friendly feel to the community and you will genuinely learn a lot as you record your sightings and photos. There are lots of badges and competitions to keep you engaged, and a host of really useful features.
Emma L
App got me interested in birding!
Super friendly community <3 This app got me interested in birding! It teaches me cool stuff and its super friendly, and fun :) The species guide is really developing my knowledge, and i love seeing cool new birds from round the world!
Stewart W
Fantastic to be involved
Fantastic to be involved, great for mental health and gets you responding with the Challenges that are to takd part in.
As featured in
AboutPressAmbassadorsAffiliatesInfluencersCareersPrivacyTerms & Conditions
An app for birdwatchers
Giving back
Connect with us
Copyright © 2024 Chirp Birding. All rights reserved.