Can Doves Swim? (And How Fast!)

Can doves swim?

Doves cannot swim but are capable of floating if push comes to shove. In most cases, doves will avoid the water because it’s not the best use of their abilities.

The average dove will often spend time around the water without going in.

It’s important to note, when asking, “Can doves swim?” it’s also essential to determine whether or not they’re afraid of the water. In this case, no doves are not afraid of the water and will often be more than happy to stay near the shore if necessary.

It all depends on the habitat.

The only time a dove will try to enter the water is:

  • Due to the Presence of a Predator
  • General Anxiety
  • Injury Leading to Falling In

For those asking, “Can doves swim?” it’s essential to understand the rarity of this situation. The average dove is never going to be seen in the water and will often walk around or fly.

This is why it’s important to observe doves when they enter the water from time to time.

It may shed light on what’s going on and whether or not something is off.

Here is a detailed look at a few water-related questions associated with doves including “Can doves swim?”.

Best Bird Feeder for Doves (EDITOR’S CHOICE)

Woodlink Going Green Platform Bird Feeder Model GGPLAT
  • Feeder is made of up to 90-percent post-consumer recycled plastic
  • Powder coated metal screen bottom allows for drainage
  • Sturdy, screwed together construction; will last for years to come

Last update on 2021-01-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Facts About Doves and Water

Fact #1: Doves Can Only Float

Doves can float, which is how they’re seen in the water from time to time.

Remember, this is a rare occurrence and it’s not something a person should expect to see. The average dove is going to be more than happy to stay away from the water except for when it’s time to take a little break for a bath.

In those cases, they will look for shallow pools of water to rinse themselves.

Experts Say...
Doves may try to thrash around in the water but it won’t increase their speed beyond general floating.

Since the dove can only float, they are not going to have much speed for those asking about how fast a dove can swim.

The dove can’t pick up speed as it doesn’t know how to swim.

can doves swim

Fact #2: Doves Drink Water 1-2 Times Per Day

Sticking to the concept of doves being around the water, they will prefer to take short breaks while flying from place to place.

These breaks include sipping on a bit of water from a freshwater source.

Based on research, the average dove stops every 2 miles to take a drink of water, but is more than happy to cover 7+ miles if necessary.

Doves will often spend time near a body of water to get a quick drink during their travels.

This is an essential detail to think about for those asking, “Can doves swim?”

They will look for freshwater sources, so they are not afraid of water as a whole. However, they are not going to deep dive into the middle of an ocean!

can doves swim

Fact #3: Doves Love Freshwater Bathing

What happens when it is time for a dove to take a bath?

The average dove is going to take regular baths whenever it gets the opportunity to. They are clean birds and that is a major part of their personality. They will continue to clean their feathers when it is possible to do so.

For this to happen, they will look for shallow pools of water and dip their feathers in. It is an easy process that happens whenever possible.

Final Thoughts

Can dove swim?

Doves are unable to swim, so this is not a sight you are going to see often. While doves are capable of thrashing their wings and/or floating, they will not swim properly like other birds (i.e. ducks).

This is something to keep a note of when it comes to doves spending time near water sources.

In general, the only time you are going to see doves around a water source is when they’re thirsty and/or looking to rinse their feathers. Even when this happens, it’s going to occur around a puddle or something that is not as wide as an ocean or a moving river.

Here is more on birds – do birds see spirits, top cuddly birds, how to stop birds from hitting windows, and premium air purifier for birds.