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American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Birds Around Las Vegas, Wildlife Around Las Vegas
 
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)

General Description: American Kestrels (Falco sparverius) are small falcons with a red back and a red tail. Face with two vertical black marks. Wings of female red; male gray.

Falcons are recognized from other birds of prey by the long, narrow, pointed wings.

Taxonomy: Falconiformes, Falconidae, Falconinae

Favored Habitat: Open areas with places to perch. Kestrels often hunt by hovering stationary in the air before diving on a prey item.

Where to Find: Fairly common, look for them in the desert and other open areas. Fairly common in town too.

American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Notice the facial strips

Comments: American Kestrels mostly eat grasshoppers, beetles, and other large insects, but they also eat small lizards, small snakes, and field mice. During winter, they hunt small birds such as Dark-eyed Juncos and House Finches that are attracted to bird feeders.

American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) If you were a tasty grasshopper or perhaps a little mouse, this might be the last face you ever see!
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel male; notice the gray wings
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male; notice the gray wings
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Wings pointed; tail red with black terminal band
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel female
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel: note gray wings
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel: note red cap
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Note "eye spots" on the back of the head
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Male American Kestrel
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel male drives Red-tailed Hawk from nest
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel male drives Red-tailed Hawk from nest
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel male drives Red-tailed Hawk from nest
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel male drives Red-tailed Hawk from nest
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel female; notice the red wings
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Female; notice the red wings
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) more to come ...
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Jamaican "White-fronted" American Kestrel; Montego Bay
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Jamaican "White-fronted" American Kestrel; Montego Bay
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Jamaican "White-fronted" American Kestrel; Ecclesdown
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Jamaican "White-fronted" American Kestrel; Ecclesdown

 
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© 2014 Jim Boone; Last updated 130915

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