American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)

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This little male American Kestrel was brought to RMRP as a nestling in 2012, showing neurological symptoms. He had contracted West Nile Virus at a very young age, which left him with behavioral abnormalities, stunted growth, and permanent vision deficits. These things left him with no chance of being able to survive out in the wild.

Since he grew up with us at RMRP, he developed a very calm and comfortable demeanor with people, and has always been a favorite among our staff and volunteers. Every spring, despite the fact that he doesn’t have a mate, he does his best to build a nest scrape (a depression in the ground for eggs to be laid in). When any of our staff or volunteers his enclosure, he courts them, offers them food, and shows off his nest building prowess. His chirps, trills, and antics are fun to see. He was named Romeo after all of his efforts to court the ladies.

At outreach events he was always a hit, with his curiosity and head-bobbing. In his older age, he has since “retired” and generally only makes on-site appearances during behind the scenes tours.