Sexing Mature Columbiformes by Cloacal Characters
While there is a pronounced sexual dimorphism or dichromatism in some species of the order Columbiformes, in most others there is not. Until recently we have known of no simple and reliable method for sexing living individuals of these latter species. Various techniques which have been used are: observation of slight quatitative differences in the coloration on the head, neck, and breast of the Mourning Dove, Zenaidura macroura (Petrides, 1951); slight differences in the contour of the head and neck of the domestic pigeon, Columba livia, (Levi, 1941); differences in behavior; and others. For a number of years, sexing by internal examination of gonads (by laparotomy) has been frequently used in the department of Genetics, University of Wisconsin. This is a delicate and time-consuming operation. Iwata (1926) described a method in which differences of the shape of the lips of the vent of Columba livia are used to distinguish the sexes. This technique has not to our knowledge been verifiable in this country (Levi, 1941).
Wagner, Frederic H. and Miller, Wilmer J., "Sexing Mature Columbiformes by Cloacal Characters" (1955). Wildland Resources Faculty Publications. Paper 1565.