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American Kestrel

Falco sparverius


North America’s littlest falcon, the American Kestrel packs a predator’s fierce intensity into its small body. It's one of the most colorful of all raptors: the male’s slate-blue head and wings contrast elegantly with his rusty-red back and tail; the female has the same warm reddish on her wings, back, and tail.


Rural Farmland


While birding we saw this beautiful female American Kestrel with prey. She didn't stay long. She flew off to finish her meal!

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36 Comments (1–25)

EmilyMarino 10 years ago

Thanks littlelokelani! This is one of my favorites! That was a fun day of birding!

Jack Settle
Jack Settle 11 years ago

Thanks! I recently discovered a patch of woods where there are quite a few red-headed woodpeckers (a more uncommon species). I actually found a specific spot where one is nesting. This is right by where my sister plays and practices soccer, so I will be there often. Hopefully I can get a lot more pictures (the ones I got today weren't very good). :)

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Aw, thank you Jack! Keep at it, your photographs are great too!

Jack Settle
Jack Settle 11 years ago

Your bird pictures are amazing! I could go through and "favorite" every one! I can only dream of getting such good pictures lol!

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Yuko, that is one of the kindest thing anyone could say about my photos! Thank you! They are incredibly beautiful birds but are often overlooked due to their size. I love that photo of the kestrel in the snow. Probably in my top 3! So thank you! :)

Noah Citezen, thanks again! I get lucky with cooperative kestrels! I could only hope for a SOD in the future...but that means I need to get my but back out thee and take some new pics! ;)

Thank you as well Sandra!

SandraPereira 11 years ago

such an amazing picture ...congrats

Noah Citizen
Noah Citizen 11 years ago

Once again Emily, it is really amazing pictures! Even with my 300mm, I never get so perfect photos.
A future spotting of the day?

YukoChartraw 11 years ago

Did I ever tell you that it was your other American Kestrel photo (with the snow) that made me fall in love with this beautiful bird? :-)

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Thank you for the kind words Hemma and Tom!

Tom15 11 years ago

Nice one Emily, I love the tail feathers!

Hema  Shah
Hema Shah 11 years ago

Such a beauty and such a cutie too.

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Thank you Elsa! She was a pretty little thing!

Elsa 11 years ago

What a beauty!

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Thank you Joshua and Birdlady!

birdlady6000 11 years ago

Great Photos!

Josh Asel
Josh Asel 11 years ago

Again, just beautiful.

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Thank you Carol Miline and SatyenM! I was lucky that she landed on that branch and decided to stay a moment, all be it a brief moment!

Wild Things
Wild Things 11 years ago

Nice shots!

Carol Milne
Carol Milne 11 years ago

Great series!

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Thank you Karen! She was a pretty little thing!

KarenL 11 years ago

Great capture Emily!

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

Jakubko, She was perched on a power-line, then flew down to the weeds where I photographed her. I was probably 20-25 feet away. (maybe a little closer, maybe a little farther. Hard to say now!

And thank you Brenda! In all honesty, I don't think a 300mm lens would make a huge difference for you. If you ever find one on sale or for a good price, it might be worth picking it up though!

Jacob Gorneau
Jacob Gorneau 11 years ago

WOW! She's beautiful! How far away were you when you took this picture?

EmilyMarino 11 years ago

I highly recommend it Liam! You can get some really great shots with this kind of lens and even better shots when you have a subject that will cooperate with you!

What do you use currently? You get some great shots too!

Liam 11 years ago

Impressive! You have some really great shots with that lens! I may end up getting the 75-300mm for my new Canon after all.

Spotted by

Colorado, USA

Spotted on Dec 28, 2012
Submitted on Dec 30, 2012

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