The response of Eurasian kestrel Falco tinnunculus to falconry at Deblin Military Airfield, East Poland


Abstract: Birds, including kestrels, constitute a serious impediment to air traffic and are considered pests when they disrupt aviation operations. This study investigated the behaviour of kestrels at Deblin Military Airfield (eastern Poland) in response to bird strike risk management by means of falconry. Trained raptors changed the behaviour of kestrels. During the period when trained raptors worked at the airfield, kestrels were less often found there compared to the control period. During falconry sessions, kestrels perched less often compared to the control period. Kestrels also hovered less during falconry sessions compared to the control period. Falconry reduced the risk of bird strikes at the airfield and also changed the composition of kestrels' diets.

Keywords: Avian pests, pest management, bird strike, airfields, kestrel

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