American Kestrel

(Falco sparverius)

Arrived at Lakeside Nature Center on November 20, 2002.

This male kestrel was found near Hwy 291 in Independence, Missouri.  He was diagnosed with a dislocated shoulder and a head injury.  The wing's mobility never fully recovered so he could not be released back into the wild.  He acclimated to people and became a perfect candidate for Lakeside Nature Center education programs.  We received permission from U.S. Fish and Wildlife to make him a permanent resident of the Center.

Natural history notes.

  • Male kestrels have blue-gray wings and a solid, rufous colored tail.

  • Still known as a Sparrow Hawk, this is the most common falcon in the United States.

  • Well adapted to prairie, desert or city life, the kestrel eats insects, rodents and reptiles.

  • Its shrill call sounds like 'killy, killy, killy.'

Check out this kestrel's picture gallery.

For more information on American Kestrels, check out the Critter Corner entry.