A Very Special Edition of Raptor Wednesday

Yup, it’s Thursday, but yesterday morning an American Kestrel caught my eye because it crossed the bow of the apartment windows and landed in a tree.
It was where it landed that was out of the ordinary. Usually, the #BrooklynKestrels pair land up near the top of the tallest London Plane tree bordering the park. This was much lower down and way out on a branch. Curious, I trained the ‘scope on the creature. No blue wings, so female. And she looked like she had a rather fuzzy head.
Yes, a female fledgling. Soon her mother was in the air chasing a crow. Then the male, or at least a male, was in the air, too. The female fledgling flew up towards our building and I wondered if she was on the roof…
Fuzzy head, very pale legs (they will turn yellow with time), and a pale cere, the skin right above the bill (this will also darken with time and become yellowish).
Pouncing on invisible prey… all the usual signs of youth.

Ladies and gentlemen, we finally have fledglings.

Big city, small falcon.

Masha Gessan on moral clarity.

This review, too, of Gessan’s new book.

4 Responses to “A Very Special Edition of Raptor Wednesday”


  1. 1 gkleing3 June 25, 2020 at 7:14 am

    Great series!

  2. 2 Charles McAlexander June 25, 2020 at 5:23 pm

    You will probably also have noticed a large number of young House Sparrows. The two events are somewhat coordinated. The nestling kestrels need lits of meat. Fledgling House Sparrow is a perfect source. They are plentiful as well as easily caught. But having kids is never easy. A close look at the adults will likely show considerable feather wear and an unkempt look.
    It’s all par for the course.


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