Subfamily COLUMBINAE

The common Pigeons and Doves appear to be the least specialized anatomically of the whole order, for they retain the ambiens muscle, intestinal caeca, and oil-gland that so many of their allies have lost. All have 12 rectrices. They exhibit considerable differences and have been variously arranged, the true Doves of the genus Turtur being generally placed in a distinct subfamily from Columba, but there is no structural character of importance, internal or external, by which the two can be separated.

Key to the Genera,

a. Tail less than 2/3 wing in length.
a1. Neck-feathers not acuminate, dark bars on secondaries………………………..COLUMBA, p. 28.
b1. Neck-feathers acuminate, no dark bars on secondaries………………..DENDROTRERON, p. 32.
b. Tail not longer than wing, but exceeding 2/3 of it
c1. Larger, no white tips to tail-feathers; tarsus shorter than mid-toe without claw.
a2. A white bar, conspicuous beneath, across tail………………………..PALUMBUS, p. 34.
b2. No white bar across tail………………………..ALSOCOMUS, p. 35.
a1. Smaller; white or grey tips to tail: tarsus longer than mid-toe without claw.
c2. Sexes alike; 2nd and 3rd quills longest………………………..TURTUR, p. 39.
d2. Sexes different; 1st and 2nd quills longest………………………..OENOPOPELIA, p. 47.
c. Tail longer than wing and much graduated………………………..MACROPYGIA, p. 48.

BookTitle: 
The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds
Reference: 
Blanford, William Thomas, ed. The Fauna of British India: Including Ceylon and Burma. Vol. 4. 1898.
Title in Book: 
Subfamily COLUMBINAE
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Year: 
1898
Page No: 
28
Volume: 
Vol. 4
id: 
1827

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