A Small Hunting Friend – A Riddle


I’m gorgeous, and I’m useful, colorful and small

even though my feet are short, I’m still good at brawl.

My main food is insects, small reptiles, mammals, and more

from carrion I keep away, I prefer a wider soar.

**

I’m unusually fast in moving, the wind carries me around

When I hunt, I’m very silent, but when I court, I make my sound.

I’m known to be quite talkative, my cry can be heard from far

to every student of ornithology, I’m a famous star.

**

We are migratory fowl, in fall we are moving South

we spend the winter in Central America where we live in routh.

Back home up north ’till Canada, we return to breed our young

we sing, we dance, and so we court, we all act as sprung.

**

We breed in caves, in old trees, and sometimes we use a nest

but to be honest, we don’t like to build, nestboxes are the best.

There we raise a couple youngsters, sometimes they’re also more

normal it is we have six babies, but rarely only four.

**

I mentioned we are useful to many farmers in the countryside

we hunt vermin, critters, insects on their ground from far and wide.

we protect the crop with what we eat and they love our call

That’s why they love us hunting there, even though we’re only small.

**

From Canada to Texas we are widely known and often seen

we’re not endangered, that is good, and we have never been.

I know it’s hard to guess my identity and that’s the game

That’s why I’ll tell you – American Kestrel – that’s my name.

*****

(Copyright: Aurora Jean Alexander, May 2020)


 

Picture courtesy of: https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/american-kestrel