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Eurasian

KestrI in Florid:Firstr co.


rd
for th southeasternUnited St tes, ,nth

a review of its st tus in N rth Am ric


BillPranty
^vian
Ecology
Lab
Archbold
Biological
Station
123 Main Drive

Venus,
Florida
33960

photographs
takenbyWeatherman
(e.g.,Figure
1) on5 and14March.In directcomparison,
the
Eumsian
Kestrel
wasnoticeably
(20-30%)larger
thanthemaleAmerican
Kestrel(E sparverius)
with which it often associated. Ihe

Eumsian

Kestrel
appeared
approximately
intermediate
in

^popka
Field
Office wider black subterminal band and a narrow
whitishtip (Figure1). Ihe underparts
were
25633
County
Road
448-A whiush-buff,
heavily
streaked
wthdarkbrown.
Ihe legsandfeetwerebrightydlow,andthe
claws were black.

(email:
hweatherman@sjrwmd.com)
In flight,theEurasian
Kestrel
showed
blackishouterprimarytipsandwhitishwingcoverts
spottedwith black.Ihe uppersurfaceof the
primarieswas dark brown and contrasted
sharply
withtherustycoverts.
Ihe undersides
of the flightfeathers
werelightlybarred.At
rest,the right feathersshowednarrowpale
fringes,and the foldedprimarytips did not
reachthe subterminal
tail band (Figure1).
Ihis shor!primaryprojection,
together
with
the black claws, distinguishthe Eurasian
Kestrelfrom the longer-winged,
pale-clawed

Harry
P.Robinson
2455EastLakeDrive

DeLand,
Florida
32724
ABSTRACT
This article documents the occurrence and

identification
of a female-plumaged
Eurasian
Kestrelat LakeApopkaNorthShoreRestorationArea,OrangeCounty,Florida26 February
through22 March2003. Thekestrelfurnished
a first for the state and for the southeastern

kesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni;Porter al.


1981, Flood 2002), which has not been

United States. The status and distribution of

reportedin North America(A.O.U. 1998).


Plmnage
patterns
suchasthebarredcrownand

thespecies
elsewhere
in theNewWorldisalso

tail ruled out an adult male EurasianKestrel,

discussed.

buttheseparation
in thefieldofadultfemales,
juvenilefemales,
andjuvenilemalesisdifficult
(Crmnpet al. 1980,Porteretal. 1981,Wheeler

FIELDENCOUNTER
On 26 February2003,Robinson
discovered
a
[emale-plumaged
EumsianKestrel(Falcotinnuncaius)
at lake ApopkaNorthShoreRestoration Area, northwestof Orlandoin Orange
County,
Florida.Thekestrel
remained
atthesite
through
22Marchandwasdocumented
byphotographs
andvideotapes.
Thefollowing
descriptionis basedon fieldnoteswrittenby Kwater
andPmntyduringandimmediately
afterviewing thebird(al timeswithin100m) [or more

and Clark 1995).

Ihe kestrelfrequented
thesoutheastern
portionof kakeApopkaNorthShoreRestoration
Area.It foraged
duringearlymorning
andlate
afternoonin fieldsrecentlyplowedfor weed
control,
andspentmid-day
roosting
onfavored
perchesin a shrubbyfield closerto kake
Apopka.
Ihe flightwasdirect,withdeepwingbeats.Most of us never saw the kestrel hover,

butWeatherman
observed
hovering
on oneor
twooccasions.
Whenhunting,thekestrelgenonlowstubble
in thefields,and
on 1 March2003.Wealsoexamined
digiscoped erallyperched
than two hours(0830-1030, 1130-1135 EST)

168

captivity.

size between a Merlin (F. colurnbarius)and a

Peregrine
Falcon(F.peregrinus),
althoughneither
of
these
species
was
available
for direct
(eraall:
billpranty@hotmail.com)
comparison.
Ihe plumagewas rusty-brown
with blackbarringon the upperparts
Ed Kwater above
(Figure1). Ihe forehead
was grayish-whim,
finelystreakedwith black.Ihe crownwas
3803Cloverhill
Court
browner
andalsowasfinelystreaked
withblack.
Brandon,
Florida
33511 Eachsideof thefacehada singleboldblackish
stripethat extendeddownward
fromthe eye
(email:
himantopus@aol.com)
andcurvedslightlytowardthenape.Ihe cere
wasyellow,theuppermandible
wasdarkgray
Harold Weatherman with a blacktip, andthelowermandiblewas
St.Johns
River
Water
Management
District graywith a yellowbase.Ihe tail wasrustybrown,narrowlybarredblack,with a much

MountDora,
Florida
32757

madeshort,low,foraging
flightstotheground.
Mostof theseflightsappeared
tobesuccessful
foraysfor invertebrates
and perhapsother
smallprey.The kestreldisplayed
no jesses,
bands,or othersignsof havingescaped
from
DISPOSITION
OFRECORD
According
to thedatabase
of theInternational
Species
InformationSystemin October2003
(ISIS2003),onlyoneEurasian
Kestrel
washeld
captivein a registered
facilityin the Western
Hemisphere
duringthetimeof oursighting--a
femaleat Zoo Atlanta,Adanta,Georgia.The
bird curator of Zoo Atlanta confirmed the con-

tinuedpresence
of theirEurasian
Kestrel
at that
facility(J.Ballance,
pets.comm.).The Florida
OrnithologicalSocietyRecordsCommittee
accepted
ourreport(FOSRC
03-512)asthefirst
verifiable record of the Eurasian Kestrel in

Florida(R.Bowman,
pets.comm.).Thisrecord
waspreceded
by anundocumented
reportof a
femaleat CapeCanaveral,
Brevard
County,
on 1
January1995(l:h'anty
1995).

DISCUSSION
The EurasianKestrelis a casualvagrantto
North America(A.O.U. 1998),with a fairly
well-definedpatternof occurrence
(Iable 1).
Thereare11reports
fromthewestern
Aleutian

Islandsand the BeringSearegionof Alaska,


fourin spring(May-June)andsevenin fall
(September-October).
Sevenother reports
haveoccurred
outsideof Alaska:singlesfrom
interiorBritishColumbia
andalongtheWashingtoncoast(Oclober-December),
four from
theAtlanticcoast(New Brunswick
to NewJer-

sey;September
and January-May),
and the
interiorFloridaindividual(February-March).
TheFloridarecordfallswithinthesetemporal
patterns
ofdistribution
butisconsiderably
farther south(by 1300kin) thanthe southernmoslpriorUnitedStatesobservation.
It also
furnishes
onlythesecond
inlandoccurrence
in
the NewWorld;LakeApopkais 93 km from
the Ariantic Ocean.

Ihere are few otherreportsof the species


from elsewhere in the New World or its mar-

gins.In theCaribbean
Basin,theonlyrecords
of the species
are of a first-winterfemaleat
Cafii Bay,Trinidadfrom 17 December
2003
through1 January
2004(M. Kenefick;
ph. C.
Hull et al.), and an emaciatedbird from the

westcoastof Martiniquein 1959.Thereis a


reportfromBermuda
atFerryPoint4 February
1908(D. B. Wingale,pers.comm.),andthere
is mentionof a reportfrom FrenchGuiana
(A.O.U.1998).Thedatabase
of thejournalSea

NORTH

AMERICAN

BIRD

65-77

Swallowcontainsat least 171 reports of


Eurasian
Kestrels
comingaboardshipsin the
Atlanticthrough2003.An additional
recordof

Gibson,D. D., andB. Kessel.1992.Seventyfour new awan taxa documented in Alaska,


1976-1991.

thiskindfromoffKapFarvel,Greenland
dates
from late September
or early October1820
(Sabine1823).We cannotruleout thepossibility of ship assistance
in the caseof the

Condor 94: 454-467.

International
Species
InventorySystem[ISIS].
2003.Species
holdings.
<http:ffwww.
isis.org/
abstracts/abs.asp>.
Website
accessed
27 Februaryand14October2003.
Macravish,B. 1988. The spring migration:
NortheasternMaritime region. American

Florida kestrel or indeed most other Atlantic


coast records.

Acknowledgments

Birds 42: 407-410.

Mlodinow, S., and B. Tweit. 2000. The fall

We thank Gian Bastitof the St. JohnsRiver

Water Management
District for facilitating
access
intoLakeApopkaNorthShoreRestorationArea;DanGibsonforgraciously
providing
informationabout all the Alaskanreports;
JamesBallance
of Zoo Atlantafor providing
information
on their captivekestrel;andJeff
Bouton,AndrewDobson,
TerryDoyle,Martyn
Kenefick, Steve Mlodinow, and David B.

Wingateforotherassistance.

Literaturecited
American
BirdingAssociation
[A.B.A.].2002.

migration: Oregon-Washingtonregion.
North American Bittls 54: 95-99.

Nikula, B. 1988. The winter season:Northeast-

ern Maritimeregion.AmericanBirds42:
227-231_

Figure1. Female-plumaged
Eurasian
Kestrel
at Lake
Apopka
NorthShore
Restoration
Area,Orange
County,
Florida
14March
2003.Thesingle
facialstriperulesout
American
Kestrel,
thebanedupperparts
ruleoutMerlin,andthedarkclaws(visible
inotherphotographs)
andshorterprimaryextension
ruleoutLesser
Kestrel.
Thisindividual
represents
thetim record
ofthe
EurasianKestrelin the southeastern
UnitedStates,and

Perkins,S. 2002.The springmigration:New


Englandregion.NorthAmerican
Birds56:
284-287.

Porter, R. E, 1. Willis, S. Christensen,and B. P

Nielsen.1981.Flightidentification
o]'Europeanraptors.
Thirdedition.T&AD Poyser,
Staffordshire,
England.

perhaps
onlythetenthverifiably
documented
record
in
Pranty,B. 1995. Field observations
winter
NorthAmerica.
17scopedphotoraplbyHaroldWeatherman.

ABAChecklist:
birdso]'thecontinental
United
States
andCanada.
American
BirdingAssociation,Inc.,Colorado
Springs,
Colorado.
AmericanOrnithologists'
Union [A.O.U.].
1998.American
Ornithologists'
UnionChecklisto]'North
American
birds,
Seventh
edition.
AmericanOrnithologists'
Union, Washing-

report: December1994-February1995.

Florida Field Naturalist 23: 77-86.


Massachusetts. Auk 5:110.

Cramp,S.,K. E. L. Simmons,
R.Gillmor,PA.
D. Hollore,R. Hudson,E. M. Nicholson,M.

A. Ogilvie,PJ.S.Olney,C. S_Roselaar,
K. H_
Voous,D. I. M. Wallace,andJ.Wattel. 1980.

ton. D.C.

Handbook
o]'thebirdso]'Europe,
theMiddle
East,andNorthA]'rica.Volume
2: Hawksto
Bustards.
OxfordUniversity
Press,
Oxford

Campbell,R. W. 1985. First recordof the


Eurasian Kestrel for Canada. Condor 87:
294.

Flood,B. 2002. The LesserKestrelon the Isles

Clark, W. S. 1974. Secondrecordof the Kestrel


(Falco tinnunculus)for North America.Auk

ofScillyBirding
World15:201-208.
Gibson,D. D. 1981.Migrantbirdsat Shemya

91: 172.

Island, Aleutian Islands, Alaska. Condor83:

Cory,C. B. 1888.The European


Kestrelin

Sabine,E. 1823. Birds.Pp. CXCII-CCX in:

Parry,W. E. A Supplement
totheappendix
o]'
CaptainParryvoyage
]'orthediscovery
o]'a
north-west
passage,
in theyears1819-1920.
JohnMurray,London.
Tobish,T. G., Jr. 1997.The springmigration:
Alaskaregion.FieldNotes51:910-912.
.2002. Thefallmigration:
Alaskaregion.
North American Birds 56: 89-92.

Wheeler,B. K., and W. S. Clark. 1995. Photo-

graphicguideto NorthAmerican
raptors.
AcademicPress,London.

Table
1.Verifiable
records
(documented
byspecimen
orphotographic
evidence)
andreports
oftheEurasian
Kestrel
inNorth
America,
arranged
chronologically
within
each
state
oprovince.
Allobservations
refer
tosingle
individuals.
Non-specimen
designations
offemales
may
bebetter
considered
asbirds
infemale
plumage,
because
juvenile
males
and
females
aredifficult
to
distinguish
inthefield
from
adult
females.
Specimens
arearchived
attheBritish
Columbia
Provincial
Museum
(BCPM)
andUniversity
ofAlaska
Museum
(UAM).
Location

Date(s)

Docmnentation
/ Plumage

References

Alaska,
Shemya
Island
Alaska,
Shemya
Island

5-9Sep1978
26 Oct1978
4-7May1981
12-14Sep1983

specimen;
juvenile
female
{UAM
3683)
report;
female
report;
male
photograph;
female

Gibson
(1981),
Gibson
andKessel
(1992)
Gibson
(1981),
Gibson
andKessel
(1992)
Gibson
andKessel
(1992)
Gibson
andKessel
(1992)

17Oct1983
3-4Jun1984
4-7Oct1991
May1992
22May1997
salvaged
inspring
1998;
presumably
died
infall1997
17-18Oct
2001
10Dec1946
31Oct-llNov1999
(lateDec
19877)
18Jan-mid-Mar
1988

report;
female
report;
male
photograph;
female
report;
female
report;
female
specimen;
adult
female
(UAM
8398)

Gibson
andKessel
(1992)
Gibson
andKessel
(1992)

report;
female-plumaged

Tobish
(2002),
D.Gibson
(inlitt.)

specimen;
female
(BCPM
15934)
photographs;
juvenile,
"probably
male"
report;
female

Campbell
(1985),
AOU
(1998),
ABA
(2002)

29Sep1887'
14Apr-5
May
2002
23Sep1972
26Feb-22
Mar2003

specimen;
female
photographs;
adult
male
photographs;
juvenile
female
photographs;
female-plumaged

Co6'(1888),
A.O.U.
(1998)
Perkins
(2002)
Clark
(1974),
AOU
(1998)
thispaper

Alaska,
AttuIsland
Alaska,
Navarin
Basin,
175kmwsw.ofSt.MatthewIsland

Alaska,
AttuIsland
Alaska,
AimIsland

Alaska,
w.Bering
Sea(5711'N165
40'W)
Alaska,
Buldir
Alaska,
Aim
Alaska,
LittleDiomede
Island

Alaska,
Shemya
British
Columbia,
Alkali
Lake

Washington,
Bow
NewBrunswick,
Fort
Beausejour
Nova
SCOla,
Minudie
Massachusetts,
Nastasket
Beach

Massachusetts,
Cape
Cod
New
Jersey,
Cape
MayPoint

Flodda,
Lake
Apopka

Gibson
andKessel
(1992)

Gibson
andByrd
(unpubL
data)
Tobish
(1997)

Gibson
andByrd
(unpubl.
data)

Mlodinow
andTweit(2000),
S.Mlodinow,
inlit
Mactavish
(1988),
Nikula
(1988),
A.O.U.
(1998)

'A.B.A.
(2002)
incorrectly
lists
thisdateas23Sep1887.

VOLUME

58

(2004)

NUMBER

169