Influence of nest-box placement and density on abundance and productivity of American kestrels in central Missouri

  • Published source details Toland B. & Elder W. (1987) Influence of nest-box placement and density on abundance and productivity of American kestrels in central Missouri. The Wilson Bulletin, 99, 712-717.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Provide artificial nesting sites for falcons

Action Link
Bird Conservation
  1. Provide artificial nesting sites for falcons

    A controlled before-and-after study in Missouri, USA (Toland & Elder 1987), found a large increase in nesting and overwinter population densities of American kestrels Falco sparverius in a 78 km2 area, where 125 nest boxes were erected in 1982-3 (0.05 birds/km2 in 1977-81 vs. 0.32 birds/km2 in 1984). There was no increase in a 90 km2 control area, without nest boxes (0.02 birds/km2 in 1977-81 vs. 0.03 birds/km2 in 1984), but there was in an urban control area (0.13 birds/km2 in 1977-81 vs. 0.23 birds/km2 in 1984), possibly due to increased food availability. Overall, kestrels used 53% of the 125 nest boxes available. Nesting success was significantly higher in boxes mounted on man-made structures (64-78% on buildings and utility poles) than on trees (33%), but still lower than in natural sites (86–88%). However, they produced as many young through double broods and replacement clutches.


Output references
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 19

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust