Friday, April 27, 2012

American Kestral

American Kestral scanning the prairie for a potential meal, Riparian Preserve, Gilbert, AZ; 12/24/2011.
Last December, the day before Christmas, as I was taking photographs of dowitchers, sandpipers, and egrets, out of the corner of my eye I saw a flash of color fly by and then land on a tree branch. And there perched an American Kestral (Above), which at 9" is our smallest raptor, but its confident stature made it look plenty regal  and large to me. Unfortunately when it was in good proximity for a a photo, it kept its back to me. Then it caught sight of something in the grassy field and took off chasing it. It was in the grass for a couple of minutes, but I couldn't tell if it actually caught something. After it flew off it alit in a tree clear across the field - too far for a photo.
American Kestral, Riparian Preserve, Gilbert, AZ; 12/26/2011.
Two days later, the day after Christmas, I revisited the Preserve, and in the same location, I saw the American Kestral again. This time it was in a more friendly photographic position (Above).

American Kestrals are found throughout the United States, often in open habitats such as meadows and fields. They like to sit on open branches, fenceposts, telephone wires. In fact just the other day while biking home from school, I saw a Kestral sitting on a wire overlooking a driving range as a pedalled by.

No comments: