Aerial hunting behaviour of the Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni during the breeding season in Thessaly (Greece)

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2003
Authors:Vlachos, C., Bakaloudis, D., Chatzinikos, E., Papadopoulos, T., Tsalagas, D.
Journal:Acta Ornithologica (Warszawa)Acta Ornithologica (Warszawa)
Date Published:2003///
Keywords:Aves, Capture rate, Falco naumanni, Hunting methods, Lesser Kestrel, Strike rate

We studied the foraging behaviour of Lesser Kestrels in agricultural habitats during the breeding season of 2000. The birds spent more time hunting in flight than perched. During 398 min. of observed aerial hunting, they spent 23.7% hovering, 14.4% hanging, 14.0% flapping, 41.2% gliding, and 6.7% soaring. The time spent on each type of aerial hunting behaviour depended on factors like breeding stage, time of day, wind speed, number of strikes, number of successful strikes, and the time spent hunting. The strike rate was 0.38 per min., the capture rate 0.10 per min. The capture rate depended on the type of hunting behaviour preceding the attack and was highest after the birds had been hovering.

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