American kestrels - small, colorful falcons known for their ability to "hover" - hunt in meadows and nest in tree cavities. They often have to compete for nesting space with invasive European starlings. To create more nesting space for kestrels, New York State Department of Transportation workers installed 25 nest boxes on highway signposts along the Lake Ontario State Parkway in Monroe and Orleans Counties. They also put up six wood duck boxes on right-of-way trees next to the water. During the nesting season, the boxes are used by kestrels, wood ducks, tree swallows, house wrens, and great crested flycatchers. In winter, screech owls use them for roosting. And the pesky starlings? The Adopt-a-Nest-Box volunteers who maintain and monitor the boxes each week in the spring make sure the invaders don't take over the boxes.
--Apr 25, 2003
|New York State Department of Transportat photo|
|Volunteers maintain and monitor the nest boxes|