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HELP - need raptor forum interests! PLZ

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HELP - need raptor forum interests! PLZ

Old 05-15-2004, 10:40 PM
  #11  
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Join Date: May 2004
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Default RE: HELP - need raptor forum interests! PLZ

I've always been intrigued at the thought of falconry , could you suggest some starting tips ? Is it an expensive venture ? Are special permits required to own Raptors ?
In the US you take a test, get a permit and become sponsered by a falconer who may also inspet your mew... where you keep the raptor. Hawaii and Conneticut are the only two states theat will not allow falconry. It was illegal throughout Canada until recently - I read 2 providences have now legalized it.

Find a falcon/hawk society in your area and they can tell you what your local rates are for classes (learning what it takes to keep and train), equipment (jesses, perches, mews, telemetry) and the actual prices for a raptor (various species in different parts of the world, as well as how it was raised).
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Old 05-15-2004, 11:13 PM
  #12  
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Default RE: HELP - need raptor forum interests! PLZ

I think that falconry is an absolutely incredible sport, and one that I've long been interested in. Unfortunately, it's a fairly exclusive venture with few practitioners, so finding a master falconer to train under isn't easy from the bit of research I've done. I also know that training and caring for a raptor requires much time and dedication, but I think the results would be worth it.

How did you acquire your falcon, if I may ask? Did you have to travel to Iran to get her?

Mike
I do to - its especially amazing to see a bird you trained perform so well. Falcons train not by physically harming them - such as spanking a dogs nose may prompt it to stay off a neighbors leg - but rather via their stomach. If you keep them at a good flying weight, their instincts will be in overdrive and they learn fast.

Caring for a Falcon really is not that difficult. After the initial manning process... many keep them perched (with an appropriate length of rope tied from the jesses on her feet) outside their homes. If there is a potential threat - passing children, dogs, inclement weather... anything that could harm the raptor while it is tied down - then keeping them in the mew while unsupervised would be mandatory. They drink very little water - usually just the fluids obtained from prey.

A proper diet and spending adequate time with the raptor are probably the two most difficult things. I get frozen quail and pigeon from a local market. Both are excellent sources of nutrition and I know the meat is safe since it is meant for human consumption. Day old chicks can be purchased in bulk for a very reasonable price. Beef steak can also be used – especially when you don’t want the bird spitting up a cast for whatever reason… since beef steak lacks bones, feathers and other undigestable items. But spending time with the raptor is of paramount for a well manned bird. An Arabic man told me at least 5 hours per day. And walking with them in conjested areas is good for them - helping them not too see humans as a threat... even going for a walk in town or shopping. Many well-manned falcons come from homes with lots of noisy children They must learn who you are, your voice, a feeding a call… one thing about free flying a raptor – it can leave you any time. So you have to treat her with respect and spend time with her – so she sees you like as a provider, a “mother” if you will. Some daily interaction is mandatory for as long as possible, as well as daily feeding preferably at the same time... usually evenings - whether flying on a creance to the glove or simply letting her jump to the glove for some food. The stage mine is at, I usually fly her on the creance for feedings. Day one was simply getting her to eat on the fist, then it progressed to short jumps to the fist indoors for food, then flights indoors, then short flights outdoors - and today she will fly to me from pretty far distances... sometimes before I even turn around and raise the glove she has started to fly to me. Getting her to hunt live prey was slow at first - but now she is quick at that as well - very fast learners and intelligent birds. As long as you use food as the reward, don't break her trust, keep her safe and keep her confidence high - you can be successful in training a falcon.

I am a civilian contractor in the Middle East. I purchased my Lanner from an Indian man who caught her near Iran. He sold her to me for about $190 and I started working with a couple local Arab (they have been training Falcons for over 3000 years), an American falcon vet, and reading books purchased off Amazon. The price of my falcon was very low - this is due to the offseason and I am the first human she has worked with. An experienced falcon in this area, with all other factors in good order, can commonly reach a value of up to and over 30,000 USD.

Are they hard to care for? I would say, not as long as you have the time and money to invest - almost like having a child. [8D]
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Old 05-18-2004, 11:00 PM
  #13  
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Default RE: HELP - need raptor forum interests! PLZ

If anyone has further interest in this they can join me here: Birds of Prey Community Forums
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