The Emerald Dove, also called the Green Pigeon, is an unusual pigeon in that it lives in tropical rainforests. Although we are accustomed to–even cavalier–about living with pigeons in urban settings, doves and pigeons are everywhere on this earth, with over 300 species.
So-named for his dazzling emerald back, Chalcophaps indica are common in northern and eastern Australia, as well as tropical Asia and India. Similar to many pigeons, they are about 10 inches (25 cm) long and sport numerous colors: emerald, rufous, black, white, pink, and gray with a bright red bill and legs. The male, seen here, has a white patch on his shoulder.
The sounds of the Australian rainforest are different than the Amazon, because the birds are different. The whipbird, for example, lives here; it sounds like a really loud cracking whip. With the many raucous sounds in this rainforest, the gentle, persistent, low cooing of the emerald dove lends a mellow accompaniment.
For an added delight, you may see this dove’s rich, verdant back flying low, weaving through this seemingly impenetrable forest.
Photo credit: Athena Alexander