What is a Kestrel?
American Kestrel is the smallest and most commonly seen falcon
in North America, and one of the most beautiful raptors in the
world. Formerly called the "sparrow hawk", kestrels
have a 20-inch wingspread, a little bigger than a large robin.
The name comes from its distinctive "klee-klee-klee" cry.
Kestrels can often be seen perched on rural power lines or
soaring in search of food, hovering on one spot or flying in "circle-8s" before
swooping down on their targeted prey. Kestrels feed on large
insects such as grasshoppers, on rodents, small amphibians
and birds. The female does most of the hunting. American Kestrels
are found in the 48 contiguous states year around, north to
Alaska in the summer, and south to the south tip of South America(1).
Kestrels like to nest in cavities, many
of which are man-made specifically to attract Kestrels for
their hunting skill. "Kestrel
boxes" have been built everywhere from backyards to
interstate highways to help the kestrel population thrive and
kill more rodents. The next step after the kestrel box was the "box
cam" to watch the kestrel pair incubate their eggs
and feed their chicks to fledgling age. Plans
for a nest box are here.
the Middle Ages, when falconry was a very popular sport, the
social rank of the falconer was indicated by the species of falcon
flown. American Kestrels, then known as "sparrow hawks",
were flown by priests(2). Today they are flown by apprentice
falconers, a practice that is controversial(3).
Kestrel Website Design has taken the American
Kestrel as our logo and mascot out of a fondness of respect for
this native American bird species, along with its ever-vigilant
approach to its work and changing environment.
Like the American Kestrel, Kestrel
Website Design swoops in on the target.