Mother Nature has taken its toll on one of our Kestrel families. The Kestrels in our live nest cam were seemingly affected by the heavy rains throughout the incubation period throughout May and were unable to produce viable hatchlings. The adult Kestrels have moved on from their efforts and will potentially return sometime next spring. We are very disappointed in this outcome and hope the other Kestrel boxes in our area are more successful. You can learn more about the other local nest boxes here.
American Kestrels, North America’s smallest falcon, are about the size of a robin and call Parker’s open space home. Kestrels do not build nests, instead nesting in natural cavities and nest boxes.
American Kestrel populations have declined since the 1960's due to habitat loss, disease, and predation by Cooper’s Hawks and house cats. Their numbers have dropped by as much as fifty percent in some areas. To learn more about kestrel populations in the area, and help increase their numbers, the Town of Parker is partnering with Colorado Avian Research and Rehabilitation Institute (CARRI), building and placing nest boxes for American Kestrels throughout the Parker area.
Parker’s kestrel project is part of CARRI’s larger initiative that involves monitoring more than 180 nest boxes from the Wyoming border south to Pueblo, Colorado. Members of CARRI identify individuals by placing numbered aluminum leg bands on each bird. By monitoring banded individuals, the goal is to learn more about nest site fidelity, mate loyalty, longevity, and range. Gathering this data can also shed light on population dynamics and help us solve the mystery of their population decline.
Beyond CARRI’s work in Colorado, nest box data is also reported to the American Kestrel Partnership (AKP), which is a project of the Peregrine Fund. AKP is an international community science project that pairs the efforts of citizens and scientists alike to learn more about kestrels and promote their conservation. For more information, visit the American Kestrel Partnership.