Zaheer Minhas

My name is Zaheer Minhas. I am from Lahore, Pakistan. Over the past many years I have kept and bred many cage birds like finches, doves, parrots and fancy pigeons. I have written this article on breeding different kinds of doves.

A symbol of peace, and very gentle by nature. Not much has been written about them. Doves are very popular among the fanciers of Pakistan. Our weather is suited for breeding of birds, especially the province of Punjab for breeding doves and pigeons. The breeding season for the doves are from March till October. Almost all the doves are kept one pair per single cage. In our country we are breeding doves in very small cages, and get very good results. 

In feeding we give our doves millet, kangani ( a type of canary seed), linseed, Khaskash, hemp seed, and rice. 

We use mostly tea strainers for nesting containers with very good results. The "tea strainers" are available in different sizes and can be used for breeding the diamond dove to bronze-winged dove. 

All the doves need lot of sunlight and should be kept inside in the extreme winter months I have kept and bred the following mentioned doves over the last 20 years.


Its (local name is KHUMRA).Very gentle by nature and also very good as foster parent. I once fostered under it the chicks of my pouter (reverse wing pouter) and believe it or not they reared one chick that is know a fully grown male. Those who have knowledge about pigeons can well imagine the size of dove with pouter pigeon. It is available in normal and white colors. Few years back other mutations of this easy breeding dove had been imported and within few years most of the colors of this dove are available in Pakistan. The available colors for breeding are pied, silky in many colors, white back purple, tufted, violet necked, ash, and purple. It breeds so extensively that the price of white back purple in 1997 was US$ 200 a pair and its price dropped down to 05 US a pair. For breeding purpose I use strainer and also bowl made of clay on the floor. The hatching and rearing result is almost 100%. For feeding I give them millet, canary seed, wheat and some other small seeds.


This dove of Australia is very popular in Pakistan. Very peaceful and gentle by nature. I saw them sun bathing in the hottest days of June and July. Normally kept colors are Grey; white tail, brilliant white, silver and red. It is kept by most of the breeders as a beginner bird. All the fanciers keep them in one pair one cage; the cage is around 1.5 feet Square. Fanciers also keep them with cockatiel and finches. In feeding the Diamond Doves a good finch mix is given.


This beautiful and gentle dove from Africa is also very popular among the fanciers in Pakistan. Rather difficult to breed as compared to diamond dove. Needs lot of sunlight, and for breeding a cage higher than other doves. I donít recommend it to be kept with finches as this dove is very temperamental by nature and should not be disturb while breeding. It is kept in one pair one cage. The cage is around 2 feet square. It takes more time to settle for breeding. In our country many wild caught capes were imported. I have got one pair which was a true pied. The female has many white spots on her body, unfortunately due to my negligence the pair escapes from my aviary before I could take any photos.


This dove is also very popular in the fanciers. Rather more difficult to breed as compared to the above mentioned doves. Needs at least 4 feet long by 2 feet wide cage. Needs lot of privacy for breeding.


A beautiful looking dove but rather very moody while breeding. It is very erratic when rearing its chicks. Not very popular in the fanciers due to itís rough temperament for breeding.


Very few fanciers keep this beautiful dove due to it difficult temperament for breeding, as it needs a large cage for breeding. Not very successful of breeding this beautiful dove.


Again Very few fanciers kept this beautiful dove due to it difficult temperament for breeding. Very aggressive by nature. Again fanciers in our country bred them in small cages. The eye ring can distinguish males. They can be kept with peacocks.


IDS would like to thank Zaheer for sharing his experiences with other dove fanciers.