Babies were yelling and adults were excitedly giving their distress call. I assumed a predator was at work and hurried ahead with the expectation of finding a Black Rat Snake making a meal of baby birds. Instead, I saw this American Kestrel perched atop the bird box.
I expected a baby Tree Swallow
to be pulled free at any instant.
This model bird box has an extra piece added
to the front that extends the depth of the entrance hole. The intent of this design is to make it more
difficult for predators to reach in and down to the nest. Apparently it is doing its job.
The Kestrel has its full neck thrust into the
box and its head is surely hanging just above the babies.
No amount of trying was going to result in a
meal being taken from this box.
I watched it make five separate attempts to
reach the nestlings and it had obviously made some attempts before I arrived on
the scene. After resting for a moment,
it flew off across the field and disappeared.
A minute later, the parents were back with food for the youngsters and
life went on as before.
Salmon and Salad Dinner
8 hours ago