I was delighted to read Heather Reimer's recent article about Eurasian collared-doves in Virden. Indeed, these birds seem to be successfully expanding their range into Manitoba.
My birder friends and I occasionally see them here in Brandon but, on Feb. 21, we were surprised to find a flock of six in a yard in Alexander.
Eurasian collared-doves and mourning doves are easy to identify but it might pay to take a closer look at these birds when you encounter them. I thought I had a Eurasian collared-dove in my backyard last spring but it turned out to be a white-winged dove - a bird commonly found in extreme southern parts of the U.S. It is very rarely seen in Manitoba so my house was a popular place for birders during the three days that the bird stayed in the area.
But truly, it is the evening who-OOH of the mourning doves that tells me spring has arrived, and many new birding adventures lie ahead. Those adventures are always better when shared with other birders.
With that in mind, Virden Empire-Advance readers may be interested to hear of a new group being formed for Brandon and Southwestern Manitoba birders and natural history lovers.
We would certainly like to hear from anyone in Virden and surrounding areas who wants to connect with other birders and take part in field trips and educational events. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.