Wildlife photography of male American Kestrel fledgling balancing on a stump in Southern Montana

A wonderfully colored male American Kestrel fledgling tests his wings and balances on a weathered stump somewhere along Bridger Creek Road in Southern Montana. With slate blue head plumage, rich gray and black patterned wings, and warm yellows and reds in the body, American Kestrels are some of the most colorful of all raptors. After fledging, the young stay with their parents for about 30 days, further bolstering their chances of survival with food deliveries and protection.