In 2022 we have purchased a digital microscope to give us a new view to learn more about American Kestrel anatomy.
Below are micro photos.
Above: Velociraptor ( dinosaur ) or Kestrel talon ?? Kestrel prey does not stand a chance !!
Below: the Kestrel leg, at first appearance looks like they are covered in hair. A closer look reveals very fine feathers.
Below: Tail feathers, note the white particles. This is a young juvenile and the partials are fragments of feather sheaths in which the feathers grow.
Below Left: Trailing edges of top of wing feathers Below right: Trailing edges of bottom of wing feathers.
These fine feathers give the Kestrels the ability to be silent when they hover over their prey. (Note: Kestrels are the only falcon that can hover.)
BELOW: very curved beak for ripping apart prey.
BELOW: eye and surrounding muscular structure removed from skull.
BELOW LEFT: eye socket in skull. BELOW RIGHT: skin removed from skull.
BELOW: feathers removed from skull.
BELOW : rump feathers from MK 2022