Kestrel - Falco tinnunculus

Description

A familiar sight with its pointed wings and long tail, hovering beside a roadside verge. Both sexes have black wing tips.  The adult male has a grey head and grey tail whilst the female has a brown head and a barred brown tail.

Identification difficulty
Habitat

Kestrels are found in a wide variety of habitats, from moor and heath, to farmland and urban areas. The only places they do not favour are dense forests, vast treeless wetlands and mountains. They are a familiar sight, hovering beside a motorway, or other main road. They can often be seen perched on a high tree branch, or on a telephone post or wire, on the look out for prey.

When to see it

All year round

Life History

Kestrels have been recently declining as a result of habitat degradation due to continuing intensive management of farmland and so it is included on the Amber List. They have adapted readily to man-made environments and can survive right in the centre of cities. Kestrels do not build their own nests, but use nests built by other species and frequently nest in or on buildings. They hunt for small mammals, birds and large insects.

UK Status

Common and widespread in Britain

VC55 Status

Fairly common as a breeding bird in Leicestershire and Rutland

Leicestershire & Rutland Map

MAP KEY:

Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Common Kestrel, Kestrel
Species group:
Birds
Kingdom:
Animalia
Order:
Falconiformes
Family:
Falconidae
Records on NatureSpot:
1558
First record:
08/01/1994 (Ian Retson)
Last record:
08/04/2024 (Gillett, Neil)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

The latest images and records displayed below include those awaiting verification checks so we cannot guarantee that every identification is correct. Once accepted, the record displays a green tick.

In the Latest Records section, click on the header to sort A-Z, and again to sort Z-A. Use the header boxes to filter the list.

Latest images

Latest records