Two field techniques were developed to detect and evaluate crop gland activity in live mourning doves (Zenaida macroura). An inexpensive, commercially-produced "inspection light" was successfully used as a crop examination device (CEO). Crops of 45 adult and 40 juvenile doves of both sexes were examined by palpation and CEO. There was a significant (P <0.00 I) dependence of test score upon crop phase; a significant (P < 0.00 I) difference also occurred between test procedures used. Best results were obtained when palpation and the CEO were used together. Under these circumstances, active, inactive, and developing or regressing crops were classified correctly 100,96.5, and 77.8% of the time, respectively.