It is precious rare to gaze at the wild and have it gaze right back at you.
In July we found three kestrel chicks trapped in a bucket on an abandoned farm.
They could not tell us how they got there or why there were no adults around to care for them.
We brought them home in a box and tried to provide for them.
We fed them with road kill grouse and rabbit, until they regained their strength and their feathers gleamed.
Within days they were flying short distances, landing awkwardly on whatever was in their path. With a little practice, they gained finesse and would fly from treetop to rooftop, one after the next.
Still they returned to eat scraps of meat we left out for them.
Selwyn took this photo, it is clear that the infatuation was unidirectional.
Eventually, the three flew off and didn't return.
We still think of them fondly and hope against all odds that they survived.
(Joe Bishop too the rest of the photos)