Great news for declining kestrel populations! In June 2021, members of the Saint Paul Audubon Society Conservation Committee (SPASCC) found five kestrel chicks in one of two nesting boxes at Belwin. The birds fledged after about 30 days. In 2020, SPASCC members found four nestlings and one unhatched egg in a box at Belwin.
From 1967 to 2019, the American kestrel population in Minnesota declined by 78 percent, inspiring members of SPASCC to try and help. They formed a committee that places nest boxes for kestrels in the East Metro, including at Belwin Conservancy.
Julian Sellers has been an SPASCC member for more than 25 years and took the lead role in the kestrel nest box project. He and other volunteers scout locations for the boxes and, at Belwin, we work together to put them up.
The SPASCC nest box project contributes data to a continent-wide research program conducted by the American Kestrel Partnership, which is a creation of The Peregrine Fund. You can learn more about local efforts at saintpaulaudubon.org.
Thanks to the SPASCC members for their hard work to document this amazing bird!
Photos courtesy of Julian Sellers and Lynette Anderson.