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Friday, January 18, 2013

Spanish Bird of the Week #15: Lesser Kestrel

By James

I mentioned in an earlier Spanish Bird of the Week that the Common Kestrel became a bit of a nemesis bird for me. Luckily, I had a much better experience finding and photographing the far less common Lesser Kestrel. Not only did Lesser Kestrels frequent the massive Seville Cathedral (the third largest cathedral in the world) but they also made their homes in some of the smaller churches throughout the city. Fortunately for me, one of these smaller cathedrals could be found just four short blocks from my apartment. I typically just saw the small falcon, which is actually considerably larger than our American Kestrels, flying over the cathedral or city square, but on one occasion I was fortunate enough to find them perched on a low overhang.

Not only was this by far the closest to the ground I had ever seen these birds, but it was also my first time seeing a male. These birds became one of my favorite parts of my city walks, and I saw them almost daily as the church they frequented was right along my path to the Parque del Alamillo. But I never got better looks at these dapper birds than that time I found them perched on my local cathedral.

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