Archive for May, 2018

Warm weather here!

We had a good three days providing the falconry display at the Blenheim Palace jousting event – but the warmth though welcome was a shock to the system. From 7.5c at a display at Thornbury Castle on the previous Tuesday to somewhere near 28c over the following Bank Holiday weekend at Blenheim. But all went well – the birds flew brilliantly and ‘Bo’ the Eagle Owl along with her other flying managed a ‘fly over’ on Sunday – I was pleased because a sudden dramatic weather change effects her most.  But she is ’30’ now and has experienced almost every condition along the way.

Sprite our Peregrine is flying everyday now and typically we lost him for several hours when he suddenly decided to go chasing pigeons. To cut a long story short he ended up knee deep in the local stream and then he spooked and ended up three hours later on our local golf course. With the help of the radio tracking equipment and an assistant falconer plus a helpful golfer we found him. With a little bit of difficulty he came into the lure.

This is to be expected as falcons ‘out’ can get chased about by gulls, crows and the like and can have more serious encounters with Buzzards. This along with a strange environment falcons and in fact all birds of prey  can appear to lose their training and become  nervous and wild. ‘Slick’ our previous Peregrine was extremely difficult to reclaim if he wandered off. So getting Sprite back after tracking him down was a real bonus. With Peregrines it is a question of when not if!

‘Pete’ our Kestrel if flying well. he took part in a school birds of prey display this week – what with his hovering stooping flight and fine plumage is a real star. He is a feisty little bird – it is survival trait no doubt that is helpful when you are the smallest raptor in the village! We continue on. I leave you with a picture of said falcon ‘Sprite’ down on the Knowle. I took it with my mobile phone when he was sitting ‘feeding up’ on my  gloved left hand.