need for a predator gaurd (baffle)

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stan hill
stan hill's picture
need for a predator gaurd (baffle)

Sorry this is probably pretty easy, but I want to just make sure.   I have been helping a local golf course try to get Audubon certification.  We have put up 10 blue bird houses (43 eggs and 35 fledglings this year), 4 bat houses, one purple martin house and 2 wood duck boxes.  We are considering a few Kestel boxes.  Our easiest location would be on both a live and a dead tree about 10-30 feet up facing SE as per easily found suggestions.  My question is the need for a predator gaurd.  All the other boxes we have put up (save the bat boxes) have gaurds and I don't see mention of a need on Kestrel box.  If recommented, what are the options for use on a tree?   

Thank you in advance...stan

Nu-Sun Cinema
Nu-Sun Cinema's picture

Hi Stan,

We have been researching Kestrels for 0ver 14 years and we never had issues with predators.

We have our nest boxes on metal poles.

The most effective guard is a simple guard made of a 24" long piece of aluminum stovepipe (8" diameter) or a diamiter that will suit you needs.. This will help guard against snakes, raccoons, cats, squirrels, mice, rats and other climbing predators as long as they cannot jump to the box from nearby trees, branches, and shrubs. Hope this helps.

For more information on our research, link to Kestrel Korner

Have a nice day,

Nu-Sun Cinema    American Kestrel Research Center

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

stan hill
stan hill's picture

thanks.....I see your in Winnipeg....I will be there in 9 days then to chuchill for some adventures.   I appreciate your input, but since going on trees I think will just have to pass on the gaurds.  Thanks again...cheers  stan

AKP-Matthew's picture

Nu-Sun pretty much covered things already, but we'll chime in just to add that predator guards generally aren't necessary for kestrel nests, unless you're observing repeated predation events. As long as you're monitoring the boxes and noticing if repeat losses are occurring in the same box, skipping guards for now is perfectly fine.

Safe travels from us at the AKP!

AKP Staff