Sunday, November 21, 2010

Manning Amelia.

Amelia, just like all the other 3 Harris Hawks I have trained might as well be a wild trapped bird. Scared and not willing to sit on the fist for any length of time. I must have tried to get her to stand on the fist even but for 2 seconds at least 200 times yesterday. As far as I am concerned that is the normal thing for me. Now birds from different breeders may say manning will be different from breeder to breeder based on how the babies where raised. If there was any human interaction or if there was basicly only the parents in the mews breeding chamber. Last night I finally got her to stand on the fist for well over an hour and eventually she tucked up her wings! Tonight I hope she will eat for me. Ill try it a few times today durring the day.

Saturday Hunt

Yesterdays hunt though was entertaining we came home empty handed. We chased 3 cottontail and 4 of the dozen or so jacks. One of the jack chases was really good and Sonya acted like she really wanted it almost grabbing it 3 different times. This photo was the end of the day just before the sun went down.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sonya Cottontail #13

Perfect Weather. Maybe just a little cooler would be nice but this was a great day to head out.

 The Cactus in this field is pretty nasty and can make you wish you had kevlar sox in at any given moment.

Just a little bunny blood and it made it to my ring.

Friday, November 5, 2010

872 Grams

Today was a high weight fly but we flew like Devils of the sky. The wind kicked in a bit after 4 pm and that made it hard out here in this part of the prairie. The area where the cottontails really becomes a wind tunnel and the jacks are hit and miss as far as who runs with the wind or against.

Sonya today though flew like a champ with TONS of strength and speed. It just seemed like that last final commitment was lacking or the wind really was effecting her. I watched as she stretched out to grab 2 different jacks only to hit the floor and back up again for another try. We dang near got this Jack that ran in circles as it had no Idea what to think of a Hawk and a Human chasing it within 10 feet. Seemed that I was a good goalie and kept that rabbit on its toes while Sonya tried to get within striking distance. But alas we came home empty handed. Thats ok though as we flew pretty hard and maybe she worked off some of that weight and we can try again tomorrow. If she seals the deal tomorrow with the same conditions but a little lower in weight, I think I may have found her hunting weight for the current time. You know your bird is just a little too high when she goes to dink around towards the end of the hunt as if we haven't been finding things to chase for the past 2 hours.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Sonya Cotton Tail #10

It wasnt too windy all day till I got out. Seems this particular field likes to be a wind tunnel. We chased very well even though Sonya was sitting at 869 grams, the highest Ive flown her yet. Im still working her up till I get to the point that I feel may be her future hunting weight.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

CHC Alamosa Meet 2010

The meet in Alamosa was great this year. It was a great turn out with more than a dozen birds. We got to fly Redtail Hawk, Gos Hawk, Harris Hawk, Perigrine Falcons and a Peregrine Gyr Falcon Hybrid. This was the first time I also got to see a falcon in real action take a duck the way it is suposed to be. The Guest speaker was Ed Picture and his talk was real informative as he was Plugging his new book. I would have loved to get one but I couldnt afford the Benjiman he was asking for it. 3 Days of Hard Hawking and lots of sun made me sunburned and physically burned out. Thorns that I had to use Plyers to take out of my knees where not fun either. It was a great time and I cant wait for the next oppertunity to fly with these great falconers and aspiring falconers to be once again.

Photo of Roger and his Gos, Nova with a Cotton Tail Rabbit.

Friday, October 29, 2010

I arrived in Alamosa around 830am today and got out pretty much right away with Roger and Dianna. We met up with a few other new people along with Rob Palmer who was taking photos. Today was the first day that Sonya ever put her feet on a tree or a pole and she did great as well as following. She first chased a chipmunk looking critter a bit. It really was difficult to find any bunnies in this field right next to the Rio Grande. We did manage to get a bunny in the hellatiously thick and tall cover and managed to get 4 slips on this bunny before it decided to run up a dirt road at which point Sonya connected. SWEET. Bunny Number 8!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Another Windy Day

Ok. This morning looked good with winds under 10 MPH but by the time I got out it was insane. Crossing my fingers for the next few days. I will say that flying in this strong wind, this gal gets some MAD exercise.

This Mornings Weather. Def-Huntable

Monday, October 25, 2010

Mother Nature :(

Ok, it's just too windy to hunt today. It's just no fun. I'm hoping that this weekend will be easier as we are having a state meet in Alamosa for the Colorado Hawking Club.

Too Windy!

This video was just after Sonya grabbed a jack and lost it, followed by an instant retry where she got it again almost instantly. The winds where howling at 30mph+ and the rabbit ran with the wind. Big mistake. Anyhow I got to her in time and just as I was reaching to grab the jack the rabbit freaked and jumped, taking my Sonya with it a good 20 feet away. I ran with the wind at my back and got some good speed myself and ended up having to jump over the jack and my bird to keep from running them both over. I instantly turned around and went to reach for the rabbit and Sonya let go. I dont know if she thought that I was there to help and she didnt have to hold on so tight or if the rabbit just broke loose with its own awesome power. I do know this, when I called Sonya up to me she had a piece of flesh with a bunch of fur on it. Just enough to make a keychain if one was so inclined. LOL We tried hard but the wind never let up. Today was also the first day that I used telemetry with her. I thought that if I was to take her out on such a hellish day of wind that we better have the beeper on. She stuck with me though and only once, like in this video did she have trouble getting back to me. I could tell that she was upset about it as she was vocal, being able to see the food on the fist but the winds where just too strong in this particular area. It was like a wind tunnel and I HAD to go get her. It was CRAZY!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Coming down from a slope soar

We came down to this spot as we saw a jack rabbit go around this area. We never found it but we did find a great place to do some slope soaring. Sonya went up a good 50-60 feet and just sat there as I busted some bush. We didnt get anything running but what a great advantage of that height that would have been. Too bad I couldnt get the camera out in time before she came down. I think she thought that I was getting out a tidbit.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sonya Day Off

I really would have wanted to hunt this morning but it was so windy I couldnt imagine that it would have gotten better. So I gave her a CottonTail Head for the day and BAM. The weather got better and totally huntable. Sometimes I swear. LOL