Turtledove Definition

Discover the meaning of turtledove, a symbol of love and peace in various cultures. Explore the characteristics, significance, and cultural references of turtledoves.

What is a Turtledove?

A turtledove is a type of bird belonging to the genus Streptopelia in the family Columbidae. This gentle bird is known for its soft cooing sound and elegant appearance. Turtledoves are often associated with love, peace, and fidelity in various cultures around the world. Let’s delve deeper into the turtledove definition and its significance.

Characteristics of Turtledoves

  • Small to medium-sized birds
  • Muted brown and gray plumage
  • Distinctive black and white markings on their wings
  • Cooing vocalizations

Turtledoves in Culture

In Western culture, turtledoves are often featured as symbols of love and romance. The pair of turtledoves in the popular Christmas carol “The Twelve Days of Christmas” symbolizes fidelity and faithfulness. In classical mythology, turtledoves were associated with Venus, the goddess of love.

Significance of Turtledoves

Turtledoves are known for their monogamous behavior, with pairs forming strong bonds that last a lifetime. Their gentle nature and melodious cooing have made them popular symbols of peace and harmony.

Case Studies on Turtledoves

A study conducted in a suburban area found that turtledove populations were declining due to habitat loss and pesticide use. Conservation efforts were implemented to create suitable nesting sites and reduce pesticide exposure, resulting in an increase in turtledove populations.


In conclusion, turtledoves are fascinating birds with a rich cultural significance. Their gentle nature, monogamous behavior, and melodious cooing make them beloved symbols of love and peace. By understanding the turtledove definition and importance, we can appreciate these beautiful birds and work towards their conservation.

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