Even the pigeons and doves don't take another partner if their companions pass away.
I don't take Jerome's statement to mean that it has literally never ever happened in history. I think a better interpretation would be that he's saying pigeons and doves very rarely take a mate after the death of their companion.
Is this true? I turn to Encyclopedia Britannica for more information here:
Pigeons are monogamous; i.e., they mate for life, and the survivor accepts a new mate only slowly.
So the question is, how slowly? Is it rare for a survivor to find a new mate, as Jerome claims?
To restate, the claim of Jerome's that I'm seeking evaluation of is composed of the following: Pigeons and doves mate for life and only very rarely seek a new partner while their current mate is alive. Moreover, they are no more likely to seek a new partner even after their mate has died.
What I'm not seeking evaluation of, is any discussion of "marriage" as a construct within the animal kingdom, or a rigidly literal reading of his statement that they "don't [ever!] take another partner."
In examining the claim, it may be useful to examine whether the answer varies depending on the species of pigeon and dove.