Squatter Pigeon

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Vulnerable

Description

Squatter Pigeon, Geophaps scripta, ranges in size from 26cm to 32cm. Their head, neck and upperparts share a colour of light grey/brown. The face and throat have distinctive black and white stripes, with skin around eyes blue-grey for the vulnerable southern subspecies or red for the northern subspecies. To earn the name Squatter Pigeon, they are known to squat down when approached or when they feel threatened.

Feeding Habits

The Squatter Pigeon feeds on the ground by walking and pecking usually among sparse and low grass. Usually in pairs or small groups. Eats the seed of grasses and small herbaceous plants and occasionally insects.

Breeding

The Squatter Pigeon's breeding habits are poorly classified. It is thought that they may breed all year round in response to sustained rainfall and food availability. They are known to nest in shallow depressions on the ground, among, or sheltered by, grass tussocks, shrubs or fallen logs.

Places to Look

  • Lightly grassed areas of open eucalypt woodland
  • Presence is erratic in many different sorts of areas
  • Known to prefer areas with water, and will not travel far from water at any time

Threats

  • Vegetation clearing
  • Overgrazing (domesticated and nondomesticated herbivores)
  • Feral predators (especially foxes and cats).

References

NQ Dry Tropics gratefully acknowledges the contribution of Birdlife Townsville (formerly the Townsville Region Bird Observers Club) to the information on this page.

Squatter pigeon © J.Rains NQ Dry Tropics 2012
Squatter pigeon © J.Rains NQ Dry Tropics 2012
Squatter pigeon © Birdlife Townsville 2008
Squatter pigeon © Birdlife Townsville 2008
Potential habitat of the Squatter Pigeon
Potential habitat of the Squatter Pigeon (Qld Government)

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