Archive for August, 2015

Birds of prey displays high summer 2015

Here at Michael Davie – falconry displays it has been a wet morning so I have been busying myself finding out why my new rod licence from the environment agency has not arrived! and doing some general administration.

We have a new falcon a Kestrel – a, this year’s bird and we have called him ‘Pete’. We had Jazz our American Kestrel for a number of years and so I was hemming and hawing about whether we should get a replacement whether it should be a Merlin but I decided I would like a Kestrel again.

Kestrels are not doing particularly well in the wild at the moment. I think there are multiple problems facing Kestrels. Urban Kestrels I think have been hit by the decline in House sparrow numbers (this is another question all of its own) country Kestrels again have problems with predation from Buzzards particularly when they choose to nest in old crows nests – they are sitting targets. With a decline in old trees with plenty of holes we need to put up nest boxes for kestrels in suitable places. They are such lovely birds and I must admit ‘Pete’ brings back memories when we used to fly kestrels as boys. Much has changed since then and Kestrels are no longer regarded as beginners birds being small and delicate but have been sensibly replaced by Harris Hawks. It should be said without the right technique any bird is difficult to train – it has to be learnt.

I think I will fly ‘Pete’ for small groups with an educational theme or for guests rather than generally at shows where our other birds are more suitable.

Brian our new Lanner or Lanneret is doing really well – flying at events and shows with real style – he has been a real pleasure for me. He has long way to go but the signs are there. I must mention ‘Pippa’ the younger of our two female Lanners who is flown at most of our events – she has done really well and excels at tight- in flying which is great for the smaller arenas. She is a crafty falcon and very difficult to fly to the lure – she has┬ávarious aerial

20150720_185456-1manoeuvres to try and catch me out!

I will leave you with a picture of ‘Pete’.