Kestrels in Paradise

When visiting our summer cottage up north during the Easter holiday we had the priviledge to watch and follow a “lovesick” kestrel couple which, as it seemed, was planning to take over an old abandoned crow’s nest in one of our pine trees.

Kestrels_redigerad-1

When returning to our Paradise in early June, now for the rest of the summer, we were of course very curious to find out if the couple had moved in and how the family planning proceeded.

The characteristic sound of the kestrel revealed that the couple was still there and in a small gap between the branches of the dense pine crown we managed to catch a glimpse of a brooding bird. Around midsummer some downy little heads popped up over the edge of the nest. It was difficult to see how many, but we guessed at three chicks.

Suddenly one morning I noticed a lot of activity up in the pine crown and then the sound of flapping wings. I realized I was sitting in the front row to watch the chicks testing their wings.

Kestrel chick in pine tree

Kestrel chick 1

Testing the wings
The kestrel chick is testing its wings…

 

... and is soon ready for its first take off
… and is soon ready for its first take off

 

Mom is supervising her exercising chicks.
Mom is supervising her exercising chicks.

Practising flying can be tiresome, time to take a nap…

…. and then get a bite to eat

Vole for lunch

I appologize for the bad quality in this and the next two photos. I blame it on the far distance and that my camera is nothing of the fancy kind. When I was taking the above photo I was so focused on the chick that I never noticed the mom coming with a vole until I opened it in the computor.

Mother and chick and a moment of peace and love.

Två små fåglar på en gren

Två små fåglar på en gren1

For two whole weeks I had the pleasure following the chicks’ progress when flying around from tree to tree on our lot. But then, on a Monday morning, those “klee-klee-klee”- or chatter calls I had got so used to were missing and so were the whole Kestrel family. Hope to see them again next year!

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