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Birds are widely distributed worldwide and are found in all the seven continents. They
live and breed in terrestrial habitats (Newton, 2003). It is believed that the highest bird
diversity occurs in the tropical regions of the world. It was also earlier thought that high
diversity was as a result of higher speciation rates in the tropics (Serle et al., 1977).
Birds are one of the largest source of animal protein eaten by humans (Oladele et al.,
2012). Nineteen species of Doves and pigeons (Family: Columbidae), were identified
in Nigeria, of which fifteen occur in the Northern Guinea Savannah (Elgood et al.,
The Laughing dove, Streptopelia senegalensis is distinguished from all other doves by
the presence of a black spotted reddish fore neck, head is vinous, the mantle brown, the
rump dark-grey and the underparts are vinous, becoming white on the belly (Serle et
al., 1977). It is called the Laughing dove due to its distinctive coo vocalization that is
reminiscent of human laughter.
This species is semi-tame and is abundant in villages and towns, spending much of its
time on the ground, feeding on fallen grains or seeds (Adang et al., 2008). According to
Oniye et al. (2001), doves are hunted and eaten in Nigeria but recently the intensity has
increased probably due to the harsh economic situation, coupled with increased demand
for protein. Its wide acceptability as a cheap substitute to other animal-protein sources
might explain why roasted Laughing dove is sold at ‘’suya’’ or barbecue spots in Zaria
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