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Doves can be found worldwide except in Antarctica. They belong to the Columbidae family, consisting of nearly 350 species of pigeons and doves.

There are six species of doves that are critically endangered worldwide. The main threats are avian malaria, deforestation, hunting, and climate change.

Polynesian Ground Dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

The Polynesian ground dove is a medium-sized dove that exhibits significant sexual dimorphism. The male has a white throat, forehead, and chest, with a varied amount of grey on the head and nape. The remaining body is dark grey, with the top half of the back and wings turning reddish.

The female has a more uniform plumage of dark brown with light brown highlights on the head, neck, and chest. The beak and legs of both sexes are dark greys. the legs are strong since this bird spends much of its time on the ground. It is locally known as “Tutururu.”

How many are alive?

150 mature individuals

Only 150 mature individuals are estimated to be present in the wild. Its population tends to be declining.

Where do they live?

It prefers primary forest on atolls containing herbs, shrubs, and ferns or thick bushes. It has been recorded in dense shrubs under coconut palms. Historically it was also found on mountainous volcanic islands, but now they have been extirpated from there.

The Polynesian Ground-dove is found only in French Polynesia, where it has become extinct in some sections of the Tuamotu Archipelago.

Threats

Although there are no natural mammalian predators for this terrestrial species, it is extremely vulnerable to introduced rats and feral cats.

Avian malaria is a serious threat to Polynesian ground dove since it can be transmitted by domestic chickens and perhaps marine birds 

Previously, locals hunted the Polynesian ground dove for food. Threats to habitat include habitat degradation caused by the vigorous colonization of islands by coconuts, which has resulted in the loss of indigenous plant foods.

Purple-winged Ground Dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

Purple winged ground dove males have slate blue upper side and pale on the lower side. Its tail is white with grey central rectrices. Wings have white edges and two or three dark purple bands across the wings. They have a black bill and dark red legs. Females are matt brown with light throats and bellies. Their wings bands are less purple. They have dark brown legs.

How many are alive?

50-249 mature adults

The species has been reported in many habitats, but the lack of recent sightings indicates that the population is now quite low. As a result, the population is estimated to have only 50-249 mature adults.

Where do they live?

It lives in humid Atlantic woodland, seemingly preferring edge habitats on mountainous, broken terrain. Records range from near sea level to 2,300 meters above sea level.

All recorded reports of the species in Argentina overlap with the flowering of two bamboo species. Because it relies on bamboo seeds and most bamboo species generate seeds simultaneously over huge regions and only after several years of vegetative development, the species must travel extensively between seeding bamboo patches.

It is endemic to the Atlantic forest in south-eastern Brazil, northern-eastern Argentina, and far eastern Paraguay.

Threats

Thousands of square kilometers of Atlantic forest have been cleared for plantations and infrastructure during the last century, disturbing migrations of this ground-dove between flowering bamboo patches.
There is a possibility that they are taken from the wild for the pet trade. Although it’s not very common, even small numbers can impact if a specie is already on the verge of extinction.

Blue-eyed Ground Dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

A blue-eyed ground dove is a small dove. The head, upper tail coverts, wing coverts, neck, and breast of the male are all purple-red. It has darker shoulders, lower breasts, tummy, flanks, and back. White coverts cover its vent and undertail. The closed wing displays shiny blue dots with dark brown and chestnut hues. The mature female has paler underparts than the male.

How many are alive?

50-249 mature individuals

Based on an evaluation of the existing records, descriptions of abundance, and range size, the overall population size is estimated to be between 110 and 260 individuals with 50-249 mature individuals.
Where do they live?
It inhabits savannahs and grasslands. The blue-eyed ground dove is known from only a few locations in the interior of Brazil.

Threats

The primary threat to this species is the widespread deforestation of the Brazilian cerrado, a huge tropical savannah, for agricultural purposes.

Climate change may affect the cerrado environment, posing an additional threat to the species.

Photo of Grenada dove

Grenada Dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

The Grenada dove has a pale pink face and forehead that fade to dull brown on the crown and nape. It has a white throat. The upper parts are olive-brown, and the underwings are chocolate brown.

How many are alive?

136-182 mature individuals. According to estimates, there are 136–182 adults in the world.

Where do they live?

The species lives in undisturbed, arid coastal scrub-woodland up to 150 meters. Its habitat in the southwest consists of a closed canopy of leguminous, usually prickly trees and shrubs between three and six meters high. It may inhabit a thin understorey of bushes and saplings, poor to non-existent ground cover, and a lot of exposed soil.

The Grenada dove is endemic to the island of Grenada. The species is only found in two locations on the island: in and around Mt. Hartman National Park in the southwest, and the Perseverance, Woodford, and Beausejour area in the west.

Threats

The threat from hurricanes to the surviving population is serious. Male calling frequency during the mating season appears to have decreased dramatically after category IV storm Ivan in 2004, probably due to stress brought on by few resources.

Multiple factors, including land development, livestock grazing, and firewood collection, might impact Grenada dove populations, with a lack of land development management being the root issue.

Populations of Grenada doves may be vulnerable to predators. In Grenada, there could have been two different imports of alien species. The common opossum is one of them, a possible predator of all Grenada dove life stages, while other opossum species are probable nest predators.

Negros Fruit Dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

The Negros fruit dove is a small fruit dove with a short tail. It was only known from a single female specimen that was collected in 1953. It has not been observed since its discovery.
The female is a vibrant dark green overall, with an ash-grey brow above a large ring of exposed yellow skin surrounding the eye. It has a white throat and yellow undertail coverts. Beak wad black.

How many are alive?

1-49 mature individuals

There is a lack of data since the only specimen was only obtained in 1953. The population is thought to be quite small (less than 50 adult individuals).

Where do they live?

The specimen was observed in a tall fruit tree in a primary forest at about 1,100 meters. Given that the forest had been destroyed up to 1,000 meters at this location, it is probable that this species is a lowland specialist and it was found at its upper altitudinal limit.
The central Philippine island of Negros is thought to be the only place where the Negros fruit dove may be found. There is a slim chance that the bird may stay undetected on neighboring islands as well.

Threats

Very less information is available regarding this specie.
The two biggest threats are likely habitat degradation and hunting, which negatively impact all pigeons and fruit doves on Negros.

Deforestation may also pose danger to the specie. In 1988, just 4% of Negros still had forest. The remaining sections of the forest are sparse, severely fragmented, and constantly threatened by logging, agriculture, and charcoal burning.

Rapa fruit dove

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

Rapa fruit doves are medium-sized doves. It is a brightly colored bird with predominantly green plumage, particularly on its wings. It has blue-gray plumage on its foreparts. Below its breast feathers, it bears a rose-purple band on its lower yellow belly. The Rapa fruit dove is distinguished by its vivid pink crown, centered on the face between the eyes. It has a yellow bill and red legs.

How many are alive?

50-249 mature individuals

According to a survey in 2017, 160 individuals were found. A survey conducted in 1989-1990 reported approximately 274 individuals. Therefore, it was estimated that 50-249 mature individuals might be present.

Where do they live?

The Rapa fruit dove feeds mostly on fleshy fruit. It inhabits moist tropical or subtropical lowland forests. It has been observed in pine plantations.
Rapa fruit dove is only found on the small island of Rapa in French Polynesia’s Tubuai Islands.

Threats

The major threats include forest destruction and degradation caused by goats, livestock, fires, and logging.

Since the spread of the invasive strawberry guava from South America, the quality of the remaining habitat has worsened. Invasive species, such as feral cats, prey on fruit doves and have contributed to their decline.