Good News for Sullivan County American Kestrels!

A male American Kestrel in the Sullivan Grasslands this morning.

This morning I headed up to our grasslands once again to check on the status of our breeding birds there. My morning took a bit of a turn however once I began finding American Kestrels. This has been a good year for this species (as was last year) in the county. I almost immediately found the same seven Kestrels on Gabel and Long Roads this morning that I had on July 1st. One single bird and a family of six. I eventually moved to the next good area for the species and found a family of four. An adult pair and two begging juveniles. Moving on to another area of grasslands just north of Jeffersonville, I came upon another family group. An adult male and two begging juveniles. As they flew to the other side of the field, another bird joined them. I’m not sure if the fourth bird was another fledgling or if it was an adult female, I couldn’t get a good enough look. Moving on further, I was on McKay Road when I came upon an adult male Kestrel. I watched him for some time, but never saw any other Kestrels with it. That was sixteen Kestrels this morning. If you were to check the ebird map, you would see I’ve had several additional birds over the last couple of weeks in entirely different areas. You would also see that others have been reporting additional birds in additional locations as well. With all the discussion in recent years about the decline of American Kestrels in the northeast, I think this bodes very well for our breeding population!

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