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Stock Dove

Columba oenas


Found at Neolithic WF16

The Stock Dove inhabits open country and sometimes more open woodland. It tends to prefer the borders between forests and open country, where old trees provide hollows for breeding. It is an uncommon winter visitor in some parts of Jordan, but this wintering population has recently been decimated by over-hunting.

Between 12,000 and 10,000 years ago, its habitats included Wadi Faynan, because Stock Dove bones were found at WF16. The Byzantine synagogue at Jerash in northern Jordan has a 1500-year old mosaic depicting the gathering of animals for Noah’s ark, including an image of the dove that brings back the olive branch, which has been identified as a Stock Dove.

 A leg bone from either a Rock Dove or a Stock Dove found at WF16 that has been burnt in a Neolithic fireplace

Image credit: ‘Stock Dove’ by Chris Cant via Flickr, CC BY 2.0