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Anna, Bird Expert, Biologist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 11420
Experience:  Have owned and/or raised parakeets, finches, cockatiels, and poultry over a period of thirty years.
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How do I tell the difference between a female and male white

Resolved Question:

How do I tell the difference between a female and male white dove?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Bird
Expert:  Anna replied 6 years ago.

I'm sorry to see that no one has responded to your question earlier. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online and saw your question.

Unfortunately, there is no sure-fire way to sex doves short of DNA testing. You certainly can't tell by looking at them. Even experienced breeders sometimes accidentally house together what they think is a breeding pair (based on behavior), only to later discover the birds are two males or two females. The International Dove Society states that old-timers in the dove business say, "The only one who can accurately sex a dove is another dove & they sometimes make mistakes".

The pelvic bone method of sexing which you may have heard about is not 100% accurate, and it’s easy to hurt the birds, so it is not recommended.

Some fanciers do a fair job of sexing their doves by watching behavior. The doves must be of breeding age before you can have any success with it. This link will take you to a list of behaviors to watch for:

There are several companies that do DNA sexing of birds. Some tests use a blood sample. Others use feathers. They are equally reliable. DNA testing is the most reliable method of sexing birds, and it is very accurate (about 99%), but once in a great while a mistake is made. If you want to do a blood test, you'd need to take the bird to an avian vet. Here are reputable companies where you can order kits for feather or blood test kits. They're under $20.

This one also has explanations of the two types of testing:

If you have more questions, let me know by clicking on REPLY.


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