We observed this male American Kestrel perched on a bare branch of a small tree near our neighborhood greenbelt. The tree overlooks a creek that runs adjacent to a residential subdivision.
The weather was brisk this morning, and the kestrel was puffed up against the cold.
We began photographing the bird as discreetly as possible. Kestrels are very skittish, and they are apt to fly away at the slightest hint that they have caught your attention.
Sure enough, the kestrel soon leapt off the branch as if he were ready to bolt. But, instead of flying away from us, the bird took the unexpected action of turning toward us and then zooming into the subdivision. There, the kestrel dived headlong into the landscaping beneath a window of the house directly across the street.
On the ground, the kestrel hopped a couple of hops before taking to the air again. He then zoomed by our location, over the creek and across busy Hebron Drive, before finally landing on a power line far in the distance.