I'm told as long as the swivel doesn't pull through the tail. All is well(extender). The initial bate does pulls the leash through the tail. It's the bateing while on the ground which damages the tail with a regular perch because the tail gets pulled against the ground...Have you found that there is tail damage for Goshawks witha Meng perch?-Thanks,Tim
Basenji, This is from the web site "The Modern Apprentice" (www.themodernapprentice.com).
"Meng Perch Designed by Heinz Meng, this is really an altered bow perch with safety enhancements. It is sometimes called a Tail-Saver Perch. This perch is marked by a narrow perching surface at the top (roughly 9" across on this one) and a wide base (roughly 24" between the rays at the widest points) with vertical rays (the outermost rays are roughly 20" long) to prevent the bird from passing under the perch and tangling. The ring to attach a leash to is at the top as well. This counter-intuitive design actually allows the bird's bating to be against a high point thus literally pulling her feet out from under her and preventing her from getting a bate at an angle that would put enough stress on a leg to break it. The high attachment also means that when the bird bates and is pulled off-center, the tail does not get bent. The leash length should create roughly a 45° angle when the leash is fully extended. In fact, the leash will pass through the bird's tail. For this reason it is important that the swivel be located at a distance that it not pass through the tail. This is easiest to achieve with a jess extender. Since the ring does not travel the length of the perch, there is no concern of the ring being trapped. "
There are also a good number of photos on the site that you could take to a welder to use to make one for you. -Joe
Have you found that there is tail damage for Goshawks witha Meng perch?-Thanks,Tim
I've never flown a gos, but i've heard of it happening, and when i looked in the weathering yard at NAFA, i don't remember seeing many, if any gos's on meng perches. The teardrop ring perch seems to be the favorite from what i've heard.
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The ring perches I've seen used with goshawks have been the rotating ring perches. I planned on using one for a passage bird but was told they work best for birds that are raised with them since they are higher off the ground. Anything high off the ground for a bird that bates a lot can be problematic because of tangling, tail problems and leg injury. If there's someway an accipiter can get tangled, it will.
For the goshawks and other accipiters I've had, I've always used a low, traditional bow perch and have never had any problems with tail feathers or leg issues. So long as the leash is kept short and the ring moves smoothly, IMHO it's the safest way to tether a bird.
I've built several of these perches, and have given them to a few friends. I think there are probably 15 or more of these that I have made as I have refined my design.
The important points are:
1) to make sure the hawk cant pass through the middle of the perch. All my perches use metal rays to accomplish that, but you could also use a screen or some other kind of wrapping.
2) a high tie off point. This should be at least 9 inches or so for large hawks, but there is no harm in this being higher. Most of my perches are 18 inches tall. The high tie off point is actually the critical thing that makes these a tail and leg bone saver.
3) a good slope on the outside so that the leash slides over the perch. Jack is correct that the leash wrapping around the perch can be a danger. My perches dont do that, although I can see where he would suspect that they might not. Most of my perches have about a 60 degree angle on the outside slope. If it was going to happen, it would have in the 9 years that me and my friends have been working with these. One danger point is for the leash to hang up where the perching surface meets the metal - make that transition a nice taper.
4) You must have enough leash for the hawk to get its feet on the ground, and the leash angle must be no more than about 45 degrees. There is no harm in having more leash and reducing the angle. Most people that adocate the high tie off method think that the angle is critical and must be very near to 45 degrees, but this is not the case. Also, as Lydia pointed out on The Modern Apprentice, a leash extender is needed to get the swivel beyond the tail.
These perches are VERY prone to tip over. The higher you make them, the more they try to flip over. If you make one of these with feet instead of with spikes this is particularly problematic, but even with spikes it causes a probelm because the spikes will try and wiggle loose with each bate. You'll need to devote some thought to getting that problem solved. Like the perch wrapping I developed, I am planning on selling what I came up with so I wont give you any specific hints on that one either. But its not tough to come up with on your own with a little thought.
Basenji, Maybe I'm missing something here or something. But you posted asking for the dimensions, etc. and signed your post "Tim". Then in the last post before this one, you said that you had built about 15 of them and posted your name as "Geoff Hirschi". What gives? Are you Geoff or Tim and if you've built them before why were you asking for the dimensions??? Am I confused here or something? -Joe
If you read the bottom, it's a note to me from Geoff Hirschi , who's perch is pictured on the Modern Apprentice site. He is the guy who made them way back for Northwoods, and is the current best Meng Type Perch, I'm told.-Tim