Temporal range: Early Miocene–recent 
|Feral pigeon perched on a supply cable|
|Geographic range of the family Columbidae|
Pigeons and doves constitute the bird family Columbidae, which includes about 42
The distinction between "doves" and "pigeons" is not consistent. In modern everyday speech, as opposed to scientific usage or former usage, "dove" frequently indicates a pigeon that is white or nearly white. However, some people use the terms "dove" and "pigeon" interchangeably. In contrast, in scientific and ornithological practice, "dove" tends to be used for smaller species and "pigeon" for larger ones, but this is in no way consistently applied. Historically, the
Doves and pigeons build relatively flimsy nests – often using sticks and other debris – which may be placed on trees, ledges, or the ground, depending on species. They lay one or two eggs at a time, and both parents care for the young, which leave the nest after 7–28 days.
 Unlike most birds, both sexes of doves and pigeons produce "
The Columbidae are usually divided into five subfamilies, probably inaccurately.
 For example, the American ground and
The arrangement of genera and naming of subfamilies is in some cases provisional because analyses of different
The family Columbidae previously also contained the family
Exacerbating these issues, columbids are not well represented in the