The first white-tailed kites that we spotted, and photographed, where at the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve near Monterey Bay in California. White-tailed kites were almost extricated from California by 1940 due to hunting and egg collecting. Preservation laws, like the Migratory Bird Act, gave protection to native species of birds and their eggs. This includes the white-tailed kite which, I am happy to say, are now common again in many parts of California. These first two pictures where taken in southern Texas where white-tailed kites can also be found.Crex Meadows in Wisconsin I was surprised to spot a perched white-tailed kite. Now Crex meadows is perfect habitat for white-tailed kites, however it is way out of their normal range. This was only the third time on record that a white-tailed kite had been observed in Wisconsin. Now the winter of 2011 -2012 was unseasonably warm and lacking in snow which might explain why this bird was in Wisconsin. The have been known to venture far from their range and have been spotted as far away as New England. It was still exciting though and people came from all around to get a glimpse, especially since the last sighting in Wisconsin was over 10 years before.