The Kestrel was once our most common British bird of prey, but the last 20 years has seen a dramatic decline of this species in several regions. Like the Barn owl, the Kestrel is a predator specialising in catching small mammals, so requires rough grassland and natural cavities such as openings in old trees for a nest site. The BTO’s breeding bird survey between 1995 and 2008 showed a 20% decline and a further 36% decline between 2008 and 2009. The UK has seen a rise in diseases attacking our trees, subsequently meaning the loss of this valuable habitat and potential nest site for Kestrels. Putting up a nest box might just help your local pair of Kestrels – take a look at the points below.
- As Kestrels predate on small mammals, they need rough grassland – if you can leave rough areas of land (or encourage the local landowner) this will help.
- By putting up a nest box, you can offer a chance to breed – take a look at our Kestrel box on the link below.
- Don’t forget to put a substrate in the bottom of your box – soil or compost is best as this gives the birds somewhere to lay their eggs.
To buy a Kestrel box built by Raptor Aid please click on this link
If you’d like some advice please get in touch!