American Kestrel: Baron
- Hatch year 2001
- Weight: 4.25 oz.
- Found in Parker’s Prairie, Minn.
- Human imprint (brother to Jack)
- Un-releasable due to imprinting
Baron is an excellent example of how educational programs can positively affect the lives of raptors and the world we all share. Unfortunately, an act of kindness resulted in permanent damage to this dynamic falcon. As a hatchling Baron and his two brothers were in their nest cavity when the tree they were in was cleared from private property. The owners were horrified when they discovered the three young kestrels in the fallen tree. Acting with compassion they took the falcons into their home in an attempt to save them. Unfortunately, this left permanent damage to the birds. American kestrels need a whole prey diet consisting of bones and fur or feathers. Knowing that these were meat eating birds, the family fed the raptors worms and hamburger. Both unfortunately lack the appropriate nutrition for growing falcons. At even greater risk than their physical health was their mental development. Raptors imprint on their parents and siblings as their eyes are focusing. This imprinting tells them who is a prospective mate and who is competition when they reach breeding age. By being fed by humans while their eyes were focusing, the three kestrels became human imprints, making them un-releasable.