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American Kestrels: Fighter Jets of the Sky

Kestrels are the smallest falcon and were once common in New England. In recent years, they have become much rarer due to the lack of open space.

Falcons are characterized by long wings and tails, which have evolved for maximizing speed during flight and vertical dives for catching prey. Since kestrels are the only falcon that will nest in boxes, the Wachusett Meadow Audubon has strategically placed several nesting boxes for these “fighter jets” of the sky.

During a recent visit, I saw my first kestrel. It was perched at the very top of an evergreen, where it was surveying the entire environment around its nesting box. The Audubon has rerouted nearby trails in an effort to protect these rare birds. I look forward to seeing kestrel babies soon!

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The Massachusetts Audubon keeps statistics on the American Kestrel. You can report a Kestrel sighting here.


About the author jmankowsky

I live in Central Massachusetts in the United States--a wonderful area for nature photography. Using a standard point-and-shoot camera, I celebrate the nature found here in a variety of local landscapes throughout the changing seasons.

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