Sunday, November 1, 2009
Dickinson's Kestrel (Falco dickinsoni) is a bird of prey of southern and eastern Africa belonging to the falcon family Falconidae. It is named after John Dickinson, an English physician and missionary who collected the type specimen.
It is also known as the White-rumped Kestrel.
Its closest relatives are the Grey Kestrel and Banded Kestrel and the three
are sometimes placed in the subgenus Dissodectes.
It inhabits savanna and open woodland, particularly swampy areas near water.
It is typically associated with palm trees and is also often found near baobab trees.
It occurs in coconut plantations in some areas.
Its range covers most of Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi along with north-eastern South Africa (mainly in Kruger National Park), northern Botswana, north-east Namibia, eastern Angola, southern Democratic Republic of the Congo and parts of Tanzania.
It is an occasional visitor to Kenya.
The total range is about 3.4 million km2. It is generally rather scarce but is commoner in some areas such as Zanzibar and
Pemba Islands. Loss of palm trees is a potential threat to the species.