The Seychelles Kestrelor Katiti in Creole is the only native day-flying bird of prey in the central Seychelles and one of the only two in Seychelles (the other is Madagascar Kestrel found on Aldabra).
It eats a variety of small animals, mainly lizards. Pairs of birds defend a territory, keeping other kestrels out. They do not construct a nest but lay their eggs on the ground among rocks, on cliffs or on ledges of buildings such as church towers. Traditionally, people have thought of this bird as unlucky and even killed it. Now, it is protected by law. Nature Seychelles has recently conducted research on the population status of this bird on Mahe and Praslin. Most of the surviving Seychelles Kestrel live on Mahe.
|Seychelles Kestrel © Nature Seychelles|
The conservation goal is to secure a stable breeding population of at least 500 pairs distributed among four of the larger granitic islands or island groups to reduce the threat of extinction.
Scientific name: Falco araeus
Conservation status: Vulnerable
Population in Seychelles at least 800 individuals, roughly equivalent to 530 mature individuals
Distribution in Seychelles: Breeds on Mahe and nearby small islands, Praslin (where very rare), Silhouette, North Island and Felicite
Habitat: Woodland, scrub, cliffs, coconut plantations, urban and cultivated areas from sea level to high altitudes
Nest: Nest on cliffs, in buildings and sometimes tops of coconut palms or trees. Two to three eggs laid
Diet: Geckos and skinks, small birds and insects
Identification: The only resident small falcon. Grey head, red-brown back