Printable Version of Topic
Click here to view this topic in its original format
Celtic Radio Community > Medieval Gateway > Falconry

Posted by: Rindy 14-Dec-2006, 07:21 PM
Hi everyone.
I am wondering if anyone out there does falconry for hobby or hire out? We have a situation going on where we have to many crows in town and they have hired a man to help keep them away by using his falcon. Good pay also. I have always wanted to do this and I would like to know how you get started, ups and downs about it. If anyone can give me any information it would be appreciated.


Posted by: Sekhmet 14-Dec-2006, 07:54 PM
There's a guy in my kingdom (SCA) that is a falconer. Also there's another man locally who raises birds of prey and rehabilitates injured ones...I'll see if I can chase them in your direction. Both are really nice.

Posted by: Rindy 15-Dec-2006, 11:40 AM
Hi and thank you Sekhmet. I am just kind of curious about it all..


Posted by: Red Feather 24-Dec-2006, 06:24 PM
greetings! I am a Master Falconer, what would you like to know about Falconry?

Posted by: Rindy 27-Dec-2006, 10:33 AM
Hello Red Feather. Thank you for replying. I was curious as how does one know a good bird from another and how does one get started? I have heard you can buy already trainned birds. Do you know anything about that? Are the birds registered? Sorry for all the questions

This is all new to me and I am just really curious about it. Thank you.

Slainte smile.gif

Posted by: Roberto Phoenix 27-Dec-2006, 09:02 PM
The cover story for Renaissance magagazine (you should be able to get one at Barne's & Noble) is on falconry. Just got it in the mail today but have'nt read it yet.

Posted by: Rindy 28-Dec-2006, 12:42 PM
Why thank you Roberto. I don't have a Barnes and Noble where I live but I bet I can find it on you do Falconry?

Slainte "Happy New Year to you!"

Posted by: Roberto Phoenix 28-Dec-2006, 05:33 PM
Of the umpteen things I do for Ren faire, falcony is not one of them. Had two parakeets once that the cat got ahold of. Does that count for anything? tongue.gif

Here is a link to the magazine. The new issue with the article should be pictured soon.

Posted by: Rindy 01-Jan-2007, 09:05 PM
Thanks Roberto good for the cat, bad for the birds.. sad.gif At least you have a ren fair Roberto....

Red Feather, may I ask you what it takes to be a Master Falconer, and what birds you think are the easiest to work with?


Posted by: Red Feather 02-Jan-2007, 10:26 AM
i will give you the details soon as I survive vacation through the holidays.....LOL!

Posted by: Rindy 02-Jan-2007, 04:11 PM
Take your time we will be here.. Enjoy your vacation!!!

Slainte smile.gif

Posted by: Red Feather 09-Jan-2007, 07:00 PM
To become a Falconer you must first find a Falconer that will take you as an apprentice! Once you have that, go with them on a few hunts to see if this is really something for you. It requires daily work with your new partner, that means no vacations unless you can talk your teacher into feeding your bird while you are gone. You will need a very good source of food, I have set-up a deal with a local hatchery and take the baby chicks they discard. My last bird was a large Redtail hen with a wing span of 55 inches, requiring 3 to 4 chicks per day when not hunting. The bird will feed itself when hunting. If you are in the United States there is a Federal test you must pass along with an inspection by your local State Game & Fish dept.. They will make sure you have all the needed items to properly care for your bird, including medical care. Your Falconry sponsor will teach everything you need to know. Two years as an apprentice, during which time you can only have one bird! One is plenty of work so don't be too eager! Five years as a General Class Falconer, during which you may have two birds and you can up-grade to Harris Hawks which will hunt together. Then in your eighth year you become a Master Falconer, and you guessed it three birds or at this time you may chose to hunt with a Golden Eagle! Way much work, and can be very dangerous. Now there is just enough to cause you to ask questions! So, please ask and I will be most happy to answer them one at a time. Just as a foot note, a moderate sized Redtail has around 200 PSI per toe of grip with there feet! That is enough to crush a Squirrels rib cage or make you cry if they grab you just right!

Posted by: Rindy 12-Jan-2007, 03:44 PM
Hi Red Feather,

Thank you so much for all of this information. There is a lot more to all of this sounds like a full time job. The birds are just beautiful and to be highly respected. I envy you in being a Master Falconer.

I was wondering did you ever have a bird fly away and not come back? The last demonstration I saw was at night of course and the bird had jingle bells on so you could tell where it was at. I would think this would be heard by its prey also.

Which is better to hunt with a male or a female or either.? Around here to catch the bird you use a trap that the teeth are covered in leather set it on a post. Someone was telling me with the Golden Eagle you can even hunt sheep. I think about how much he could injure you..may be I still to Another question then I will stop. Do you always want to keep hoods on when not hunting? This is so interesting. Sorry for all of the questions..


Posted by: Red Feather 14-Jan-2007, 09:11 PM
Greetings! I have had a bird leave, it is sometimes unavoidable...I prefer to hunt with hens as they are both fast and slightly more agressive than the Tercels! the Golden eagles are often used to hunt Wolf and Cayote. The bird quickly learns to not rattle the bells when it counts, and I enjoy the questions.....

Posted by: Rindy 22-Jan-2007, 02:52 PM
Hi Red Feather, I was wondering if you have ever heard of this? To catch a hawk you use a trap wrapped with leather put it up on a post of the fence and they go to land on it and it snaps without hurting the bird. I think it is all very fasinating.
Any websites out there you recommend?

Do you have any pictures of your bird or any of the hunt?

Thank you once again for your help.


Posted by: Red Feather 23-Jan-2007, 12:13 AM
I would not advise such a trap! All birds have hollow bones that are very thin to as we say "lighten the load" for flight. Raptors eat the bones of their prey to help maintain the calcium levels of there own bones....such a trap could easily break a leg! A Bal-Chatri trap is more desirable! It is a cage so to speak with many snares covering it with say a mouse inside for bait. The cage protects the mouse from the Hawk and the snares entangle the feet. The trap weighs about the same as the bird so it can't fly with the trap.

Posted by: Red Feather 23-Jan-2007, 06:16 PM
One of my dogs that hunts with my Red Tail! smile.gif

Posted by: Rindy 23-Jan-2007, 07:09 PM
Hi Red Feather Thanks for the picture the dog has him treed alright. I used to coon hunt with black and Tans.. it was interesting too. At night of course..
Has one of your birds got its talon around your finger and not let go? What do you do if that happens???? Another one of those dumb questions..

Thanks again...

Posted by: j Padraig moore 24-Jan-2007, 07:29 AM
Actually this fascinating Rindy. Keep the questions coming!!!

Posted by: Red Feather 24-Jan-2007, 10:37 PM
There are no dumb questions! That does happen, the bird wants to sit at the highest point possible, so if you want them to release your hand, you lower it and they will start to walk up your arm. Careful, soon as they release you need to raise your hand again so it is the highest point or they will walk right up your arm and onto your head! Now the bird does not know the difference between tree bark and your skin, so you can imagine how this might feel in the! Please ask as many questions as you like and I will answer as I am able! I am enjoying your questions very much! I would love to work with you as an apprentice, I can tell by your interest that you would be a patient Falconer! smile.gif

Posted by: Rindy 28-Jan-2007, 12:20 PM
Thank you Red Feather. I don't know how patient I am but thanks for the compliment.


Posted by: dragonsfly 09-Feb-2007, 09:17 AM
Rindy thanks for this thread. I've been interrested in Falconry since I was ....ooohhh bout 13 or so Cornell University ~ Ornithology & had done some vol. work at an east coast Conservation Society & 2 Audubon Societies, rehab. inc. just on the smaller birds, animals & reptiles though.

Red Feather...I have since moved from my childhood home & have aquired 6 + acres & a ton of free time. There is a Falconry School which does offer a certification course within a few hours of me and also a Raptor Center. What are your thoughts an these?

Posted by: Red Feather 09-Feb-2007, 10:07 PM
I am sure you would learn much about the care and handling of Raptors! I like the Sponsor/apprentice set-up, seems more like an activity that is enjoyed and less like a job. The relationship you develope with your Sponsor and with your Bird will be very rewarding!

Posted by: Rindy 10-Feb-2007, 09:07 PM
I thought this was interesting.
My city is going to pay this man $8000.00 for 50 days. The falcon was to keep our crow population down. The city netted and coated roosting trees with chemicals, installed electronic detouring and utilized explosive noise makers. They also tried hiring police officers to shoot them off duty. I think I need to get into the falcon business. Anyhow I think its a good wage. The falcon is flying the friendly

Slainte smile.gif

Posted by: Red Feather 11-Feb-2007, 05:53 AM
That is a fair price concidering the man most likely paid over $2500.00 for the falcon! There are many dangers to the bird in the city, transformers on power lines, the chance the bird could over shoot and slam into a building, or tail-chasing across a highway and getting hit by a car. Tracking equipment can be expensive also.....

Posted by: Rindy 14-Feb-2007, 02:01 PM
Thanks Red Feather. Ok, another question, if using two birds do they ever fight over the food "prey" and if so what do you do? lol...I have this image in my head of rainning

Slainte smile.gif

Posted by: Red Feather 14-Feb-2007, 04:47 PM
Another excellent question! The best birds for group hunting is the Harris Hawk! They are natives of the Sonoran Desert and they hunt in groups, sharing the kill by rank in the group.

MEASUREMENTS: The Harris’ Hawk has a body length of 18 - 24 inches, a wingspan of 3 1/2 - 4 feet, and weighs 1 1/2 - 2 1/2 pounds.
HABITAT: These hawks are found in semiarid habitats like savannas, chaparrals, scrub prairies, and mesquite and saguaro deserts. They range from the southwestern United States through Central America and into much of the drier habitats in South America.
DIET: Harris’ Hawks search for their mammal, bird, and reptilian prey from a perch or as they are flying. In some areas, family groups will hunt cooperatively. When hunting larger prey, like jackrabbits, hunting in a group will increase their chance of success.
REPRODUCTION: Harris’ Hawks build stick nests in trees, bushes, cacti, and on man-made structures. The female lays 2 - 4 eggs that are incubated for 33 - 36 days. The young hawks fledge at nearly 6 weeks, but stay close to the nest for an additional 3 - 4 months.
NAME DERIVATION: The scientific name comes from the Greek word para, meaning beside or near, and the Latin words buteo, referring to a kind of hawk; uni meaning once; and cinctus meaning girdled, and refers to the white band at the base of the tail. The bird was named by John James Audubon after his friend Edward Harris. This hawk has also been called a Bay-winged Hawk and Dusky Hawk.
Harris’ Hawks are social birds. Some of the young will stay with the family unit up to 3 years and help raise subsequent broods and hunt cooperatively with the family.

Harris' Hawks are popular birds used in the sport of falconry because of their group hunting style.
Live and hunt in family groups of 3-7 birds. One of only two social raptor species in the world. Mating system can be monogamy, polyandrous, or polygynous.

Posted by: Rindy 22-Feb-2007, 11:31 AM
Hi Red Feather,
That makes sense. You know this thread is keeping me awake at night thinking up questions. LOL.. ok, do you hunt the birds when they moult? Do they tend to get onry then?

Any one else feel free to ask questions jp, dragonsfly, help here...

Slainte smile.gif

Posted by: Red Feather 02-Mar-2007, 09:30 PM
Yes you can hunt Raptors during their molt! Due to the fact they must fly they molt one or two feathers at a time. Normally the time of molt is after hunting season and a time when you want to feed the bird as much as they desire to ensure they have the best feathers without stress marks for the next year hunting season, so most of us do not hunt our birds during this time. In the wild they must hunt year round to eat.

Posted by: Rindy 09-Mar-2007, 06:24 PM
Thank you Red Feather. I was also wondering which of the sexes you prefer to hunt with. There is so many rabbits out here they would have a hey day.

Also do they need to be vacinated? I sure wish you had some pictures of your birds. Do you clip there talons? I will be thinking up more I am sure.

Thank you again thumbs_up.gif


Posted by: Red Feather 10-Mar-2007, 08:48 PM
Greetings again! If you plan to hunt just rabbits you might want a male (tercel) because of their speed and the fact that a rabbit will not fight like a squirrel will! If there is a chance that you may encounter squirrels then go with a hen! The hen is larger and therefore stronger and they have the PMS thingy going on (LOL) not really, but it sounded good! Hen's are not slow by any means, its just that the Tercel is blinding fast and rabbits can be tricky at the last second. Talons do not need to be trimmed nor the beak if you allow the raptor to feed on whole game! The bones do a fine job keeping them worn just right! Talons an inch long sharp as a needle and strong as an ice pick are the norm for Red Tails!

Posted by: Rindy 28-Mar-2007, 07:14 PM
Thanks so much Red Feather. I was thinking rabbits. Do they kill their prey right away???? The thought of that is kind of bothering me. Well I have to say the crows won, the one falcon didn't run them away. In the wild they are not enemys dumb idea. This is such a neat subject. Sure would like to see some more pictures if anyone has any. I love looking at the birds..


Posted by: Rindy 30-Jun-2007, 10:22 AM
Has anyone every used owls for hunting? Just curious. The bald eagle was taken off the endangered list this week. I think that is very good news.


Posted by: Red Feather 01-Jul-2007, 07:38 PM
Greetings! Owls have been used for hunting, it's kinda like hawks for the day shift, and Owls for the night shift! They do not like each other don't try to mix.......

Posted by: Rindy 03-Jul-2007, 11:57 AM
Hiya Red Feather. Thank you for answering that question. Is there a better breed of owl than another or are they pretty much the same? Male or female?? May be it doesn't matter. I think that would be totally awesome to see an owl hunt.
Thanks again for answering.


Posted by: Red Feather 03-Jul-2007, 09:24 PM
I have found any "breed" to be fine, keep in mind they will hunt different prey according to the type bird.The female is normally 1/3 larger than the male (tercel), and she is dominate! The females are more aggressive and can take larger game than the male! Both hunt excellently!

Posted by: Rindy 03-Jul-2007, 10:26 PM
Thanks Red Feather... I am sure I will come up with some more questions. Do you have any pictures of your birds? Would love to see them.


Posted by: Red Feather 04-Jul-2007, 08:42 PM
I do have some pics, just having a hard time getting them small enough to post! I will continue to work on it........ wink.gif

Posted by: Rindy 07-Jul-2007, 03:44 PM
Thanks Red Feather no hurry.
I watched a video of a eagle take down a deer. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. It was amazing to see the power that eagle had if I can find it again I will post the url..


Posted by: Rindy 10-Oct-2007, 09:26 AM
Here is a video I came across of a Goshawk catching a duck.


Posted by: Rindy 03-Jan-2008, 09:00 PM
It's been awhile since we've posted in this thread. I am still drawn to this art/sport. I'm mesmerized everytime I see a raptor.

I do have another question. What do you do to keep these birds from attacking a game bird?

May be there isn't anything you can do, lol, that's why I'm asking the question...I suppose.

Does anyone else wonder such things? unsure.gif


Posted by: Red Feather 05-Jan-2008, 05:01 AM
Now thats the thing about a Raptor! No one is his boss.....They will attack anything they feel they can eat! LoL, I have seen mine attack my dogs for getting too close and even myself. They demand respect at all times! A Raptor is never tamed. Now, they become attached to you and will protect you if they feel you are in danger, but never tame.

Posted by: Rindy 09-Jan-2008, 10:31 AM
Well said Red Feather. Thank you. Anyone else have any questions?


Posted by: Red Feather 31-Jan-2008, 08:27 PM
If you have time try this site and meet a few of my friends!

Posted by: Rindy 31-Jan-2008, 11:03 PM
Hiya Red Feather. Hey thanks for the great links. I may subscribe to one of the magazines and do some reading up on this. It just nags at me "do it do it" haha. I saw a huge bald eagle today sitting on a tree stump above a river just beautiful.

Keep the informatin coming. I just hope if I get one. That I am not afraid of the bird. Guess its like any wild animal "its wild" hate to lose a finger... then I couldn't type very

Thanks again you have been so helpful.


Posted by: Red Feather 01-Feb-2008, 08:11 PM
LOL! you can overcome a missing finger, while I do have all of mine I only use 3 on each hand to type! Now we know why I have so few posts! wink.gif

Posted by: Red Feather 01-Feb-2008, 08:28 PM
Shea and Cassie

Posted by: Rindy 02-Feb-2008, 12:12 AM
What a wonderful picture Red Feather. That bird is gorgeous. What a great dog too. Now how old is Shea? Thank you very much for posting this picture. Does Cassie ever excite the bird to where you can't work with it?


Posted by: Red Feather 03-Feb-2008, 10:51 PM
In this picture Shea is about 1 1/2 years old and Cassie is 1 year old. Both were looking at a squirrel in the next yard and I was whistling to try and turn there attention, they were intent and ready to hunt. Cassie had learned to respect Shea and keep a distance, Shea had learned that if he followed Cassie through the woods she would moved game on the ground and most often allow Shea a good attack angle on the game. They worked as a team with a common goal of catching game. Never was there a dispute over who the game belonged to, always Shea and Cassie was content to just chase with the satisfaction of knowing Shea would catch the game. Cassie would bark at squirrels in the trees and look at Shea as if to say "get him"! There is much joy in my memories from the many hunts! smile.gifsmile.gif

Posted by: Rindy 06-Feb-2008, 03:03 PM
Thanks for sharing that Red Feather. I am glad they get along. Hope you will share some of your stories with all of us.

I figured you were just puckering up for the picture lol!!! It is a nice picture.


Posted by: Rindy 29-Feb-2008, 08:54 PM
I was wondering Red Feather, or anyone else out there who might know the answer to this question. Does a certain breed of dog do better than another? I am glad they work together well seems like it would be a lot to try and control.


Posted by: Red Feather 12-Mar-2008, 02:58 PM
Well, I thought perhaps someone would like to add a few comments! Any breed of dog is fine as long as they "tree" or perhaps chase rabbits if you are in an area with a bounty of rabbits. I prefer my Jack Russells, they just have so much energy! smile.gif

Posted by: Rindy 16-Mar-2008, 04:37 PM
I'm sorry to have put you on the spot..
I know there has to be someone else out there that have questions on this subject right? I guess my Schipperke will do then, he chases helicopters that fly over oh anything that moves. He has caught birds though so I don't know what he would think. I need to study so much more to see if I really want to do this. It's always fascinated me. Thank you for answering.


Posted by: Red Feather 26-Mar-2008, 07:32 PM
Freedom and I have been together 10 years this summer. She came in as a baby in 1998 with two broken wings. Her left wing doesn't open all the way even after surgery, it was broken in 4 places. She's my baby.


When Freedom came in she could not stand. Both wings were broken, her left wing in 4 places. She was emaciated and covered in lice. We made the decision to give her a chance at life, so I took her to the vet's office. From then on, I was always around her. We had her in a huge dog carrier with the top off, and it was loaded up with shredded newspaper for her to lay in. I used to sit and talk to her, urging her to live, to fight; and she would lay there looking at me with those big brown eyes. We also had to tube feed her for weeks.

This went on for 4-6 weeks, and by then she still couldn't stand. It got to the point where the decision was made to euthanize her if she couldn't stand in a week. You know you don't want to cross that line between torture and rehab, and it looked like death was winning. She was going to be put down that Friday, and I was supposed to come in on that Thursday afternoon. I didn't want to go to the center that Thursday, because I couldn't bear the thought of her being euthanized; but I went anyway, and when I walked in everyone was grinning from ear to ear. I went immediately back to her cage; and there she was, standing on her own, a big beautiful eagle. She was ready to live. I was just about in tears by then. That was a very good day.

We knew she could never fly, so the director asked me to glove train her. I got her used to the glove, and then to jesses, and we started doing education programs for schools in westernWashington. We wound up in the newspapers, on radio (believe it or not) and some TV. Miracle Pets even did a show about us.

In the spring of 2000, I was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. I had stage 3, which is not good (one major organ plus everywhere), so I would up doing 8 months of chemo. Lost the hair - the whole bit. I missed a lot of work. When I felt good enough, I wouldgo to Sarvey and take Freedom out for walks. Freedom would also come to me in my dreams and help me fight the cancer. This happened time and time again.

Fast forward to November 2000, the day after Thanksgiving, I went in for my last checkup. I was told that if the cancer was not all gone after 8 rounds of chemo, then my last option was a stem cell transplant. Anyway, they did the tests; and I had to come back Monday for the results. I went in Monday, and I was told that all the cancer was gone. Yahoo!

So the first thing I did was get up to Sarvey and take the big girl out for a walk. It was misty and cold. I went to her flight and jessed her up, and we went out front to the top of the hill. I hadn't said a word to Freedom, but somehow she knew. She looked at me and wrapped both her wings around me to where I could feel them pressing in on my back (I was engulfed in eagle wings), and she touched my nose with her beak and stared into my eyes, and we just stood there like that for I don't know how long. That was a magic moment. We have been soul mates ever since she came in. This is a very special bird.

On a side note: I have had people who were sick come up to us when we are out, and Freedom has some kind of hold on them. I once had a guy who was terminal come up to us and I let him hold her. His knees just about buckled and he swore he could feel her power course through his body. I have so many stories like that. I never forget the honor I have of being so close to such a magnificent spirit as Freedom's.

Hope you enjoy this.


Posted by: valpal 59 27-Mar-2008, 08:22 AM
Red Feather,
Thank-you so much for sharing that. It brought tears to my eyes and goosebumps to my arms. I am at a loss for words.

Posted by: Rindy 27-Mar-2008, 11:01 AM
Hi Red Feather,
When you said you had stories I had no idea they would be so moving. I have thought about this one since you wrote it last night and I am having trouble coming up with the words to express how it made me feel.

I have always felt they are in the top of the special animals that live here on this earth with us. Sounds like Freedom had healing powers. It just a miracle for both Jeff and Freedom.

Thank you so very much for sharing this story with all of us. This is an amazing story. Your friend is truly blessed and so am I for getting to read this story. I am so happy for Jeff and Freedom both. thumbs_up.gif

Come over to the Clann An Drumma main website and click on Gallery then on the left side go down til you see Lomond Shores Balloch and you will meet a new friend of the bands. She's so beautiful think I'm in love wink.gif


Posted by: Red Feather 30-Mar-2008, 12:51 PM
A pic of Jeff and Freedom!

Posted by: Rindy 31-Mar-2008, 09:54 AM
Red Feather, I can't remember how you do a thumbnail. Anyhow here are the pictures of Jeff and Freedom. What a beautiful bird and story.

Jeff and Freedom

user posted imageuser posted image

Posted by: Rindy 16-May-2008, 10:49 AM
Here is a site I came across on 15th Century Falconry Ancient & Medieval Falconry: Origins & Functions in Medieval England


Posted by: Red Feather 16-May-2008, 08:11 PM
Much thanks M'lady! I have saved the link! smile.gif

Posted by: Rindy 20-May-2008, 10:13 PM
Your welcome just glad you liked it Red Feather.

Hey everyone thought I'd post this short clip on the Red Tailed Hawk shows just how amazing they are. You might of seen this before. Feel free to share your stories or videos with all of us on these beautiful birds of prey.


Posted by: Rindy 26-May-2008, 09:32 AM
I found a beautiful bird that I would like to have. I think it's beautiful. I wrote what kind of bird it was now can't find it. Has anyone hunted with these birds or may be just kept them as a pet? Anyhow I love the way they look.

user posted image


Posted by: Patch 26-May-2008, 03:39 PM
It definitely appears to be some type of falcon. (the wing length is the giveaway.) Our falcons around here are not brightly colored. Were I to guess I would say it preys on small do medium birds. I do not really know though.



Posted by: jime307 26-May-2008, 09:32 PM
Hmm... looks a little like a perigren (probably spelled wrong) falcon, but they're usually not that brightly colored

Posted by: Patch 26-May-2008, 10:17 PM
The birds that use my feeders as a "lunch counter" are Perigean falcons. There are two that nest on one of the buildings down town. These do not have the bright colors. They are lt. brown with black markings and a nearly white underbelly. I have watched then from my kitchen window when they kill a bird in my back yard (about 25 feet) Actually they knock it out of the air, then land on it and cover it with their wings till they are sure nothing is going to steal lunch.



Posted by: Red Feather 27-May-2008, 08:05 PM
This picture appears to be of a Kestrel, which is in the falcon family.
The American Kestrel is the only New World species termed "kestrel". Actually, the molecular data of Groombridge et al. (2002), as well as morphological peculiarities (like grey wings in males and a black ear-spot) and biogeography, strongly support the view that this species, among the Falco falcons, is not a kestrel at all in the phylogenetic sense but perhaps closer to the hobbies.

Malar-striped clade or Common Kestrel group

Madagascar Kestrel, Falco newtoni
Seychelles Kestrel, Falco araea
Mauritius Kestrel, Falco punctatus
Réunion Kestrel, Falco duboisi - extinct (c.1700)
Spotted Kestrel, Falco moluccensis, found in Indonesia
Nankeen Kestrel or Australian Kestrel, Falco cenchroides, found in Australia and New Guinea
Common Kestrel, Falco tinnunculus, found in Europe, Asia, and Africa
Rock Kestrel, Falco tinnunculus rupicolus, found in South Africa
Basal lineage(s) of true kestrels

Greater Kestrel, Falco rupicoloides, found in Eastern to South Africa
Fox Kestrel, Falco alopex, found in Equatorial Africa
Lesser Kestrel, Falco naumanni, found in southern Europe, India, and most of Africa except for the Sahara and equatorial forest areas
African gray kestrels (a more distant group)

Grey Kestrel, Falco ardosiaceus, found in Central to Southern Africa
Dickinson's Kestrel, Falco dickinsoni, found in Eastern to Southern Africa
Banded Kestrel, Falco zoniventris, found on Madagascar
American Kestrel

American Kestrel, Falco sparverius, found in North America and South America

Posted by: Rindy 28-May-2008, 10:39 AM
Patch, That is so neat you have falcons that nest by you. I found a dead bird in my yard by the feeders. He was pretty mangled. May be that's what happened to him was the bigger birds got him. Or I got to thinking may be it was young and my dog got it.

Red Feather-that's it! I wonder if anyone hunts with this species. I just thought it was cool looking. Thank you for taking the time to post this information. Have you been out with your bird at all this spring?


Posted by: Patch 28-May-2008, 01:15 PM
QUOTE (Rindy @ 28-May-2008, 05:39 AM)
Patch, That is so neat you have falcons that nest by you. I found a dead bird in my yard by the feeders. He was pretty mangled. May be that's what happened to him was the bigger birds got him. Or I got to thinking may be it was young and my dog got it.

Red Feather-that's it! I wonder if anyone hunts with this species. I just thought it was cool looking. Thank you for taking the time to post this information. Have you been out with your bird at all this spring?


All I find are feathers after the falcon is gone if I do not see it kill the bird. I think they carry them off. At first I thought cats were doing it but the birds killed were not "ground feeders." I have seen the falcons covering a kill 7 times and actual kills 3 times, all in my back lawn. I enjoy watching birds though the bad thing is feeding probably helps spread "West Nile".



Posted by: UlsterScotNutt 13-Jun-2008, 03:05 PM
I have only witnessed one falcon strike in mid air. We happen to, be looking up at this falcon when all of a sudden it folded its wings and dove down. In mid air it exploded into a mourning dove, all you saw was an explosion of feathers! It continued pretty fast downwards behind the tree line so we lost sight of it, but what a sight it was.

Another bird of prey was a Bald Eagle, it landed very high up on a dead tree on this ridgeline, about 75 yards away from me. As I saw it land on the branch, the branch broke and started to fall with the eagle still holding on, flapping his wings wildly. I thought for sure he was going to crash to the ground, but at about 20 feet off the ground he let go and flapped away, that was pretty exciting.

And one last story was a hawk attacking a squirrel way up in a tree , the hawk must have lunged at this squirrel about 4 times as they both went crashing further down the tree, each time the squirrel making a last secong dash to safety. The hawk finally flew off without the squirrel.

Posted by: Rindy 28-Jun-2008, 02:03 PM
Patch, I have really slowed down on feeding the birds due to the West Nile. I hate to do that but I have to be able to do my garden. It's bad enough.

USN, what great stories!

I thought this video was interesting.


Posted by: Patch 29-Jun-2008, 01:25 PM
QUOTE (Rindy @ 28-Jun-2008, 09:03 AM)
Patch, I have really slowed down on feeding the birds due to the West Nile. I hate to do that but I have to be able to do my garden. It's bad enough.

USN, what great stories!

I thought this video was interesting.


It is too bad but West Nile Disease seems to affect mostly the "song birds" though it does get a lot of Crows. The Sparrows, Starlings and Doves seem to avoid it, although with Sparrows and Starlings there are so many, it would be hard to tell if some died.

My 6 tomato plants require nothing yet but soon the "sucker" leaves will have to be picked off.



P.S. my daughter has to come down to capture the stills of my sword collection and get them on my computer. I can not do it.   

Posted by: UlsterScotNutt 30-Jun-2008, 08:08 AM
Rindy, that was a great video, like the bait balls in the ocean.

I keep feeding the birds, but the squirrel has finally figured out how to defeat the best squirrel proof feeder. It is so funny to watch, he slids down to the top off the feeder, grabs ahold of the bar it is hanging from and then shakes the dickens out of it, it is so funny when its full because his whole body has to shake!! Then when he knocks enough seed out of the holes on to the ground , he casual jumps down and eats of the ground!. The mourning doves and other squirrels sit underneath waiting for him to shake and they feed real quick till he jumps down and chases them all away, too funny.


Posted by: Camac 30-Jun-2008, 10:18 AM

Yesterday at the Vancouver Zoo a Lioness killed and ate a Golden Eagle. Seem the eagle was perched on a pole in the Lion inclosure being harrassed by crows for invading their territory. Guess it distracted the eagle and one of the Lioness climbed the pole startling the Eagle which flew directly into the path of another Lioness waiting for the opportunity. Shocked awhole bunch of people but this is what happens in Nature. Can't blame the Lioness for having a snack.


Posted by: UlsterScotNutt 30-Jun-2008, 10:27 AM
Nature at its rawest. Too bad for a beautiful eagle, stimulation and a snack for the lions, an eyeful and a story for the zoo spectators.


Posted by: Rindy 19-Jul-2008, 04:03 PM
USN glad you liked the video- that sums up the day at the would of been a site to see for the zoo goers.
I can just see this squirrel shaking the feeder. I think they are the funnest animals to watch. They are so smart, I just love them.

Patch It would be nice to see your sword collection if your daughter gets the chance to do this for you. Hope your plants are surviving the birds.

Camac I agree you can't blame the lioness at all for doing what she's suppose to do. Natures way.

I have been meaning to ask if anyone knows of any good books on falconry hunting stories or films or more stories to share?


Posted by: Patch 19-Jul-2008, 05:54 PM
I think I am going to give up on the capture from the video, get them out of the safe and re photograph them , have them printed to CD and then I should be able to post them. I have bought them at gun shows and occasionally knife shows for the last 30 years. In the beginning they were reasonable but for the last couple of years they have been rather expensive.



Posted by: Camac 21-Jul-2008, 08:59 AM

At Queens Park (our Provincial Legislature) ther is a Peregrine family nesting in the eaves. They just gave birth a while back to their 8th set of twins. Help keep the pigeons and squirels under control around the park. Absolutely magnificent birds, could watch then all day,


Posted by: Rindy 29-Oct-2008, 10:31 AM
The crows have returned by the hundreds...where's the falcons?? LOL laugh.gif Any one have any new, news to report?


Posted by: flora 29-Oct-2008, 10:45 AM

Just a couple of days ago I reread this forum. I wondered how Jeff has been doing.

We have red tailed hawks that stay in our area and of course there are ospreys. Just recently we have had eagles move back into our area. Boy I have missed them. So now there is a power struggle between the ospreys and eagles. But there are not to many crows in the area now!


Posted by: UlsterScotNutt 29-Oct-2008, 11:41 AM
I too have just reread this topic and it is still just as interesting.
I trust all goes well with Jeff and Freedom.

Stayed at a B&B in Blandford, Mass sitting at the breakfast table watching all the birds feeding at the platform feeder, then we notice no more birds, just a sparrow squatting down on the feeder and at first what we thought might be an injured or sick flicker sitting in the apple tree right there. They both stayed for about 5 minutes , very still and hunched, when all of a sudden this hawk came bursting around the apple tree , flew at the sparrow, the flicker takes off, sparrow escapes, hawk pulls a u-turn and gone. Breakfast table excitement.
Later that day we come back from our travels and the hostess tells us how she was in the barn when all of a sudden a small bird flies into the barn and hits the window and falls, at the same time a sharp shinned hawk flew in after it and just missed hitting her. Must have been the same hawk looking for a spot of brunch before heading south again.


Posted by: Rindy 19-Nov-2008, 12:41 PM
I am glad everyone is enjoying this thread. I too have been wondering about Jeff and Freedom Flora and USN. Maybe Red Feather has heard something and would like to share with us.

USN I would love to see this excitement your able to view. In my travels I did get to see a bald eagle sitting on a fence post this week. They are so big and beautiful it just took my breath away. I saw a couple of falcons which is common but I hadn't seen a bald eagle in a long time.


Posted by: Rindy 16-Aug-2009, 06:08 PM
I am a little confused on Sakers. I have read that they attack birds and then they don’t. Does anyone here use these birds or have anything to add? I came across this article that I thought was interesting. What a beautiful bird.
user posted image

Sakers What Are The Anyway by Troy Moritz

The Saker is NOT a gyr, there are some similarities,
but I don't even believe they are subspecies, as a matter of fact, the
idea is ludicrous. My sakerette is very large, 25-27 ounces, when was
the last time you saw a 25-27 ounce jerkin? Fine, I know you're saying
"but the saker is a smaller subspecies". What about aspergillosis? Sakers are
considered the hardiest of all falcons, you can drop a vault on a
saker and they will fly the same day. You put a house plant to close
to a gyr or say the word "spore" or "bumble-foot" and they are ready
for a 1000.00 vet bill. Next, lets talk feather quality. Gyrs have a
considerably more brittle feather, they are faster, and have a
snappier wing beat. The saker is very soft feathered, its wings are
really durable, they love rolling in cover like a harris or accipiter.
If anything the saker looks like a peales falcon, have you ever looked
at there wings? They have alot of wing load.

My 2 cents worth is in, and Ii've got to tell you, I am curious what
the similarities are between gyr and saker. I see a large amount of
prarie falcon in my sakerette, they frequently act similar.
An interesting study. They did a study in Europe, (mentioned in the
book "all my life with hunting birds" by DeBastyai) the study was of
six peregrines and six sakers. The peregrines instinctively killed the
pigeons at the hack block first, and the sakers the rabbits and
gerbils, only when the preferred food was gone would they kill the
others. It would be interesting to see if gyrs would also choose pigeons over fur
in the same situation.

Posted by: Rindy 18-Jul-2010, 04:08 PM
It's been some time since we've posted in this thread. Is anyone doing any birding?


Posted by: Rhymer 08-Jan-2011, 02:51 PM
Just to let you know . I am a member of the RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) here in Scotland. I am really into bird watching. We get plenty in the garden and occasionally a Sparrow Hawk. We also have plenty of Buzzards in the area, they nest nearby. One day last year a Sparrow Hawk sat on the fence with the rising sun shining on her, a truly magnificent site. Only once I spotted a Golden eagle, high in the sky riding the thermals, beautiful site.This was near Oban in the west highlands. having found this thread has whetted my desire again to do Falconry...must check out A Bird of prey Centre near us in Cumbernauld.



Posted by: Rindy 12-Jan-2011, 12:09 PM
Hi Rhymer wow that's impressive. I take it you've done falconry before? What a great photo. I haven't seen a lot of birds of any kind it's been so cold here they are nesting up. Have feed out and water. They really like the water when it's this cold. Well below zero fahrenheit. Most of the "smart" birds fly south. lol. "this one is too stubborn" lol. All I have seen recently are Sparrows.

Yes I have seen photo's of the Birds of Prey Centre. It looks like a very good place to learn about falconry. Let us know how things are going for you. And what kind of birds you see.
Thanks for posting


Posted by: Rhymer 12-Jan-2011, 04:52 PM
Actually must be honest, never done falconry before. Just have a desire to do it. Robin, Thrush,Blackbird,Blue tit,coal tit,Chaffinch,Ring Necked Dove,Stock Dove,Starlings and of course Sparrows, all frequent our Garden this winter. Must not forget the little "Jenny" Wren.



Powered by Invision Power Board (
© Invision Power Services (