the Hunter's Lane
summer hunter's guide:
eurasian collared doves
The Eurasian Collared Dove is a dove species native to Europe and Asia; it was introduced to Japan, North America and islands in the Caribbean. The Eurasian collared dove is a medium-sized dove, distinctly smaller than the wood pigeon, similar in length to a rock pigeon but slimmer and longer-tailed, and slightly larger than the related European turtle dove, with an average length of 32 cm (13 in).
In many states, like California for instance, Eurasians are considered to be an invasive and “non-game” bird species, which means certain rules do not apply to them. Typically, there are no set bag limits or shell plugs/limiters required (remember that pump/auto preference?). Be sure to check your local/state hunting regulations for specific limitations and requirements.
The majority of states have declared Eurasian collared doves an unprotected species and/or allow year-round hunting with no bag limits. Other states only allow harvest of collared doves during the regular mourning dove season but there is no bag limit for collared doves.
Several states take a more conservative approach and only allow harvest during the regular dove season and a harvested collared dove counts toward a hunter’s bag limit. Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Kansas have special seasons for collared doves which are more conservative than a year-round season but more liberal that the regular mourning dove season.
It's also important to note that many states have regulations requiring hunters to keep a fully feathered head and wing attached to a bird in the field so game wardens can distinguish between a mourning dove and collared dove in a hunter’s bag.
Eurasian Collared-Doves are found throughout much of North America in urban and suburban settings with access to bird feeders and other seed sources. Eurasian Collared-Doves eat mainly seed and cereal grain such as millet, sunflower, milo, wheat, and corn. In agricultural areas, they seek open sites where grain is available, including farmyards, fields, and areas around silos.
Doves are more active in mornings and evenings — often the best time to hunt. Hunters can locate good areas to hunt by scouting and observing where doves are flying to food or water sources.
In the southern half of the United States, Eurasian collared doves are most prolific in areas where there is waste grain and steady food sources like nut trees and fruit. Think orchards, farms, wheat fields and dairies. Eurasian Collared Doves respond very well to Pigeon and Mourning dove decoys.
Doves are very unlikely to approach if they spot humans (or any other predators) nearby. Since you are trying to get these doves to fly within an optimal shooting range, wearing the right camo to help you blend in will be crucial. You may want to also consider a portable blind to mask your movement and position. And don’t be scared to rotate locations.
Recommended Caliber for Pronghorn Hunting:
12 or 20 gauge Shotgun
12 gauge is the classic go-to for wing shooters and works well for Eurasian Collared Doves
20 gauge shotgun options offer less recoil and work just as well for dove hunting, especially when using modern TSS shellshot
You want to aim over six feet in front of the bird. As a general rule, one inch of barrel movement equals one foot of lead for the bird. If you shoot like you are going to miss in front of the bird, you will likely put the dove right in the center of your shot pattern. The red target in the upper right corner roughly represents where you want to aim before pulling the trigger.
Be sure to keep your eyes on the bird as it falls, allowing you to recover your game without too much searching involved. If you are fortunate enough to hunting with trained bird dogs, well...they know what to do.
THE HUNTER'S LANE:
 20 gauge shotguns
eurasian collared doves
WE RECOMMEND IN 2023
Chasseur Classic Side-by-Side Shotgun
Caliber: 20 Gauge
Stock: Grade 3 Select Oiled Walnut
A beauty to behold and a joy to shoot, the Chapuis Armes® Chasseur Classic Side-by-Side Shotgun gifts the avid upland hunter with unparalleled field performance. This finely crafted field companion for pheasant, quail, and grouse features a rich AAA-grade satin walnut wood stock and box-lock, coin-finish receiver laser engraved with acanthus scrolls and game scenes. Other highlights include gloss blue barrel, double trigger, brass bead front sight, round action and automatic ejector. Chapuis Armes Chasseur Classic side-by-side shotgun includes 5 interchangeable choke tubes (C, IC, M, IM, F) and ships in a custom-fitted hard case.
New! Caesar Guerini:
Syren Tempio Sporting Over/Under Shotgun
Caliber: 20 Gauge
Stock: Oiled Walnut
Built with ease of handling at the forefront of design, the Caesar Guerini® Syren Tempio Sporting Over/Under Shotgun is the perfect shotgun for beginners to top-performing competitors. This competition shotgun features incredibly lightweight barrels that enhance its maneuverability, while the hand-oiled deluxe Turkish walnut stock looks great and has checkering for easy handling. The DTS trigger system is highly adjustable so you can fine-tune it for the perfect fit, and the hand-polished action with its Invisalloy™ finish boasts a classic scroll and gold-highlighted rose design that delivers striking good looks. A 20mm soft rubber pad soaks up felt recoil so you can shoot longer and stay on target easier for those doubles. 6 competition choke tubes pair with the over-bored barrels to give you the exact performance you need for a variety of events. The 6mm ventilated rib is topped with white Bradley-style and front silver center bead sights. Rounded forend and manual safety. The Caesar Guerini Syren Tempio Sporting Over/Under Shotgun comes with a stock and trigger wrench, choke case, choke wrench, and plastic case with combination locks and velvet stock and barrel sleeves. Mfrs. lifetime warranty.
694 Sporting B-Fast
Caliber: 12 Gauge
Finish: Hand-rubbed Oiled Finish
Created specifically for clay shooting, the new 694 over-and-under platform was designed and tested in collaboration with the Beretta Shooting Team with the objective to match a shooter's passion for the sport with a reliable and accurate competition shotgun. Featuring improved stock ergonomics for an increased field of vision and a new pistol grip design, the 694 adopts the perfect ballistics of the Steelium Plus Optima HP barrels and features a redesigned steel forend with a new, self-adjustable auget button and a lower profile opening lever with an anti-glare finish.
Raffaello World Class Semi-Auto Shotgun
Caliber: 20 Gauge
Finish: Silver/Gold Engraved
Stock: AAA Grade Walnut
Available exclusively at Bass Pro Shops® and Cabela's®, this extremely limited-edition model Benelli Raffaello World Class Semi-Auto Shotgun earns prized distinction as a cornerstone addition to any gun collection. Pure-shooting function rivals the stunning beauty of this semi-auto with the award-winning Ethos platform as the ultrareliable core. Based on the highly desirable 50th Anniversary High-Grade gun from 2018, this exquisite offering features the same fine full-coverage rose and scroll nickel-finished receiver and gold-filled bordering. Each gauge features unique engraving. The 12-gauge model has beautifully engraved pheasant and mallard hunting scenes with gold birds. The 20-gauge model comes engraved with gold-inlayed partridge hunting vistas. Highly figured AAA-grade satin walnut furniture and gloss blued barrel and receiver top cover offer eye-pleasing contrast to the centerpiece engraving.
BR110 Light Luxe Over/Under Shotgun
Caliber: 20 Gauge
Finish: Blued/Anodized Grey Finish
Stock: Turkish Walnut-Checkered
Bust clays in confidence with the Rizzini BR110 Light Luxe Over/Under Shotgun. Featuring a gray, anodized alloy, low-profile receiver with ornamental engravings, and a blued steel barrel with chrome-lined bore, this shotgun offers superior accuracy and lasting durability. The handsome Turkish walnut pistol grip stock features 26 lines-per-inch (LPI) checkering for a reliable grip and improved control. Heavy-duty automatic ejectors and oversized ejector cams ensure reliable ejection performance, while a single selective adjustable trigger boasts a consistent, light pull for superior performance. The manual safety is easily accessible with either thumb for ambidextrous manipulation. Includes 5 interchangeable screw-in choke tubes (C, IC, M, IM, F).