Feb 11, 2022
Rapturous Raptors over the marsh
A single female Kestrel had been observed and recorded regularly over the past 12 months on the Wilden Marsh SSSI. She would often sit high on a powerline strung between pylons, overlooking the marsh below. At other times she could be spotted hovering over the reed beds, seeking out prey. But always alone.
And then, on one bright spring day, the marsh was visited by a male Kestrel. It was interesting to observe how the resident female would react. After some initial calling, both took to the air, at first circling each other before the action captured in this photograph took place.
Within a few short moments, the male was seen to fly directly at the female, rotating his body to clasp talons with the female. They then fell downwards towards the marsh, talons intertwined, both uttering the hoarse kek-kek-kek calls. A few metres from the ground, they separated, the female to her familiar perch, the male away from the marsh.
Interesting, the female Kestel hasn’t been sighted on the marsh since this dramatic encounter.