‘Pete’ the Kestrel.

I have been struggling to get another photo of ‘Pete’ our 2015 male Kestrel. So I include a picture of him set against the Laurel hedge. He is a game little hawk and is flying really well. He is not afraid of vertical stoops and does this wonderful parachute stoop, down to to the lure on the ground. He is more likely to do this on a windy day – he drops down  as if on a spiders web – wild kestrels do this frequently.

He has not hovered yet – not properly – when he does I will reward him and hopefully this will encourage him to it again. Guests really like him and appreciate holding him on their falconry gloved hand after he has flown- they all feel like a later day Billy Casper from the book ”Kestrel for a Knave’ written by Barry Hines. I should mention that it was his brother Richard who was the inspiration of the book. He was the falconer and indeed trained the 3 Kestrels used in the film ‘Kes’ directed by Ken Loach. Richard Hines recently published autobiography ‘No Way But Gentlenesse’ is a great read and gives him the recognition he deserves – thank you Richard. He was an also an early reader of the ‘The Peregrine’ by J A Baker. I flew ‘Pete’ at an event yesterday he was just great – so were the the other birds but I leave you as promised with a picture of  him taken recently.

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