Eurasian collared dove

Streptopelia decaocto

Hunters afield for Sunday’s opening of dove season may encounter up to four types of the birds.

Mourning doves, of course, will be the most common. Some years, Kansas hunters shoot more doves than any other kind of game bird in the state.

The next-most common dove will be Eurasian collared-doves.

Imported from the Bahamas in the 1970s, collared-doves have moved steadily westward from a release in Florida. They’ve been in Kansas for about 18 years. Though most are confined to cities and towns, hunters are finding them in increasing numbers in rural areas.

Hunters have no daily bag limit on Eurasian collared-doves because they’re an invasive species. The daily limit is 15 per day for mourning doves.

If hunters have more than 15 doves in their possession, they’re required to leave a feathered wing attached to any collared-doves while in transport. Ringed turtl -doves, another invasive, are subject to the same rules as Eurasian collared doves. White-winged doves, a species native to America, count in the limit of 15 mourning doves.

Every year an increasing number of white-wings are shot by south-central Kansas hunters.