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Since doves are a symbol of peace throughout the world, releasing "white doves" has become a popular and beautiful way to celebrate or comemorate special events such as weddings, graduations or funerals.

The American Dove Association supports professional dove releases and would like to clarify some facts in an effort to maintain the safety of the birds and provide a carefree experience.

  • Homing Pigeons: The "white doves" that are commonly released are actually white homing pigeons. Homing pigeons are strong flyers and have a powerful homing instinct which allows them to return home safely.
  • Ringneck Doves: The White Dove is not the same bird as the white homing pigeon. They are actually a color variety of the domestic Ringneck Dove which is much smaller than a homing pigeon. Ringneck doves do not have the homing instinct and should not be released in any situation. Any Ringneck Doves that are released will not be able to fly far and become easy prey for predators, nor will they be able to forage on their own.
  • Professionals: Dove releases should be done by professionals. Professionals generally maintain a very high standard which ensures the safety of their birds and the integrity of your event. Their birds are well taken care of and have a home to which they will promptly return upon release. Ringneck doves will not return home and the release will undoubtedly prove fatal.
  • Pass the Word: It is important that white ringneck doves never be released in any circumstance. We invite and encourage ADA members to include a prominent link to this page on your personal websites. Feel free to use any of the graphics at the bottom of this page..
  • Links: Below are some links with more excellent information.
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