Anyone at Diva Crows will tell you that I am not a fan of mourning doves. The babies require a completely different regimen of care and at the end of all that work they, well, they turn into mourning doves. Last year we had an adult build a typically flimsy nest over our entrance, where she placidly raised two clutches of babies. I felt sorry for her during one storm and left her food, which she didn’t eat. The birds are not very bright, not very pretty, and completely devoid of personality. Grackles are louder and more annoying, but at least the end result is a sleek incandescent bird.

So when we got a call about a mourning dove about 3 weeks ago, I was not excited. The bird came in with no visible injury or symptoms other than being unable to fly. Wings were fine, weight was fine, appetite was good, and no signs of illness. This went on for a week or so until the dove seemed to remember it was a bird and supposed to fly. So she did. The Good Samaritan who brought in the bird took her back because she had a mate. Fine. Good riddance.

Today we received these photos from said Good Samaritan. Of course we can’t be sure it’s the exact same mourning dove but there is a non-zero chance this bird sitting on eggs and our patient are one and the same. We rarely get any intel about our patients post-release. When they come back it’s a mixed blessing. We welcome the visit but worry about the bird’s ability to survive on its own. But this mourning dove is in the wild doing her thing. Rehab is an act of faith, but sometimes we get a hint that what we do makes a difference.