Comments: Birds depend upon fruiting plants and trees in tropical hardwood forests for their food supply. Diet includes the fruit of over 37 species of trees and shrubs (Bancroft et al. 1994).
The nestling diet is dependent primarily on four species of trees, poisonwood (Metopium toxiferum), blolly (Gaupira discolor), strangler fig (Ficus aurea) and short-leaf fig (F. citrifolia), making the relative abundance of these species very important. Poisonwood is by far the most important due to its high lipid content. The number of nesting pairs, nesting success, and survivorship of young have been observed to increase when poisonwood fruits ripen (Bancroft 1991).
White-crowned pigeons also consume the fruits of fiddlewood (Citharexylum fruiticosum), coco plum (Chrysobalanus isac), gumbo limbo (Bursera simaruba), pigeon plum (Coccoloba diversifolia), sea grape (Coccoloba uvifera), snowberry (Chiococca alba), mastic (Matichodendron foetidissimum), and the fruit of royal Palms (Roystonea regia, Kale 1978). White-crowned pigeons may also eat the "seeds" (fruits?) of the black mangrove (Avicennia germinans).
In Puerto Rico, the species forages on hardwood scrub slopes and canyons in mountain forest; it roosts and nests mainly in mangroves and may disperse into interior forest during the nonbreeding season (Wiley 1979). In Jamaica, it occurs in lowland forest of all types, especially the less arid types, and throughout wet limestone forest; it is a summer visitor to montane forest (Lack 1976). See Lack (1976) for species of fruits eaten in Jamaica.