Make Your Own: Kestrel Box

I like my garden do double duty.  As in, look pretty and provide food.  Or, look pretty and require little maintenance.  Or, look pretty and provide homes for wild animals.

HawkWatch International works all over to promote education on and understanding of hawks, but also does research with regards to their declining numbers.

Kestrels, a very small falcon, do not build their own nests but instead use nests used and then abandoned by other birds.  These nests can be hollowed trees or remnants of a bald eagle’s nest or even nooks on an existing building.

But like most hawks and raptors, kestrels numbers are declining.  Declining numbers could be lack of available nest sites, could be competition from other birds, or could be an environmental factor not yet understood like DDT used to be.

Either way, providing a kestrel box seems like an all around good idea.  And if Kestrels don’t take up residence, there are other birds who also need a nest box of this size.

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And luckily, there are a million easy plans to build such a box.  My favorite being the one below which simply requires a chop saw, a drill, (1) 1×10- 8 ft long, and some hardware.  Unfortunately, I don’t have any in-progress photos of my box being built, but the image below in very concise as is the MD DNR webpage I borrowed this from:

wakestrelboximage credit: http://www.dnr.state.md.us/wildlife/habitat/WildAcres/wakestrelboxplan.html

Now I’m just hoping to see a Kestrel family move in!