Thursday, August 1, 2013

This week's Crops & Clips: American Kestrel

The American Kestrel is one bird that I will especially miss seeing now that the fields surrounding our Illinois condo have been developed. They liked to perch on the stakes marking the utilities. These were the highest structures on acres of recovering prairie, great places from which to hunt for grasshoppers and mice. This one was only yards away from our front door. Now our neighbor's front steps occupy the exact site.

Blue posts indicated the locations of water lines. This post was newly repainted in anticipation of the construction. The male's blue back nearly matches the color.

Male Kestrel in Flight20090821

American Kestrel 3-20090821

Construction was stalled by the economic recession, and the paint faded on some of the posts.

American Kestrel male 2-20120707

American Kestrel 2-20090821

Blue photosensors on the street lights seemed to attract the kestrels. Was this just a coincidence? They probably provide a better view.

American  Kestrel 20101108

Amer Kestrel 4-20101108

Amer Kestrel 3-20101108

Female kestrels have brown backs, and they also favored the blue light sensors.

American Kestrel 20101104

A female kestrel in flight.

American Kestrel 2-20101104

Another female (or was this possibly a young bird?) rested on a communications line marker.

American Kestrel female 20120707

A male flew directly at a female that was perched atop the light pole. What were his intentions?

American Kestrels 20120707

American Kestrels 2-20120707

He drove her away!

American Kestrels 3-20120707

This pair was present all summer. Although I never found a nest or saw any young birds, they spent much time in a large tree on private property adjacent to our development.  

Shared in The Bird Depot


  1. Hi Ken Magnificent series of shots of these American Kestrels. Lovely to have them living so close

  2. Superb views of your Am Kestrel with its distinctive facial pattern. It would be a great shame if they disappear as a result of the new development.

  3. Great series, Ken! It's been fun this year trying to find nesting Kestrels (Florida subspecies). Great job photographing this small, fast target!

  4. A beautiful bird that I would love to see in the wild. Great photos Ken, thank you for sharing them.

  5. They are such charming little hawks! We had a neighborhood kestrel when we owned a home in Oregon and fed birds .... I was never too happy when he flew into a tree above our feeders...

  6. Awesome shots of the Kestrel! Great post, Ken!

  7. Great shots!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  8. Beautiful shots of the bird. Very cute.

  9. Fabulous shots of these handsome birds!

  10. Hi Ken,
    Beautiful pictures of the kestrels.

  11. The American Kestrel is a stunning little bird Ken and your pictures really do the species full justice. I hope you can continue to find them in your area, if not in the immediate neighbourhood.

  12. What a beautiful bird!

  13. Amazing!!! I'm totally enthralled by the action shots you've shared this week!

  14. PS...This is Anni @ I'd rather b birdin'...just in my personal blog admin today [Hootin' Anni]. I'm too lazy to switch. :o)


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