Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Creature Feature #374: Kestrel

Kestrel are several species of falcon, spread across four lineages. Only one species, the American Kestrel, is found in the Americans. All species are characterised by their tendency to hover, facing into a headwind. From this height, she scans the open countryside below for prey - generally a rodent or a reptile, before dropping into a killing dive. Like all raptors, the female is larger than the male. She does not build her own nest, using one abandoned by another species (such as a crow) or locating a natural crevice. She hatches the eggs, whilst the male provides food. She has adapted well to human encroachment on her habitat, and has even been known to nest around buildings.

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