Species: Falco sparverius, American Kestrel   •   Born: 2005 – Died: January 20, 2019    •   Gender: Male   •   Disability: Human Imprint

A wonderful ambassador of the American Eagle Foundation left us on January 20, 2019. Bo was almost 14 years old and loved by all the staff.

In 2005 he was orphaned after a larger predator killed his family. He was found under the porch at the home of the people that found him and was not old enough to leave the nest. He became a human imprint and could not be released into the wild.

Bo was a very popular ambassador and went on every educational program with me. He had a gentle personality and sweet disposition, always standing tall and proud in front of a crowd. All who met him and learned about the smallest falcon in the United States (American Kestrel) fell in love with him. He educated thousands of people in many states about the importance of his species. In the spring when he saw someone he loved (human), he would trill and dance while offering his food, then run into his little house.

He was loved by all the staff and will be missed!


     ~Karen Wilbur, Avian Care Specialist & Education Coordinator


The American Kestrel, or Sparrow Hawk as it is sometimes called, is the smallest Falcon in the United States. The females are slightly larger with reddish-brown wings. The males have bluish-gray wings.

The black marks under Kestrel’s eyes are called ‘mustache marks.’ They work like the black paint athletes use under their eyes to block the reflective glare of the sun.

They eat small birds, insects, mice and other tiny creatures. They perch over fielded areas, wait for their prey, begin to hover over their meal, and then fly down to catch it. The Kestrel has the unique ability to see ultraviolet light. Since mice have weak bladders—and since urine reflects ultraviolet light—the mice practically leave Kestrels a road map straight to their next meal!

They are incredibly fast birds and have been known to dive at speeds of 60 -100 mph.