Training has started on Ozzy this last week. He is starting to learn to jump to the fist. I gave him some rabbit skin toys with his food hidden inside. He is having fun playing with the skins and attacks them as his life depended on it(no weight reduction yet). He didn't like my help at first. I thought I was gonna get grabbed. He is starting to figure out if I do not help him get into the skin it's hard to get his food.
I've had some handling experience with a few EEO's this summer (two males and a female). Such large owls; was always intrigued by their size and possible capability as a falconry bird. Looking very forward to this thread's progress, cannot wait to see the success you have! Wish you the best of luck with Ozzy!
"Falconry is not a hobby or an amusement; it is a rage. You eat and drink it, sleep it and think it. You tremble to write of it, even in recollection. It is as King James the First remarked, an extreme stirrer up of passions." --- T.H. White
Post by shortwingn on Aug 17, 2013 13:10:10 GMT -5
08-17 2013 Update 90 days Had a hard time getting Ozzy to jump. Apparently, he didn't like small tidbits. He will come to the fist(now 20') for a whole quail or large reward. Luckily he can't see close up and will take a small tid bit when held to his beak. A trade is easy while he is eating the tid bit and I think he thinks he ate the whole quail. I am also reducing the size of the quail slowly(I wonder if it will work?). Something else of note. He is out of control possessive where he was raised and fed.(worse than the worst accipiter I have ever seen!) In new locations he is sort of easy to trade or get him off his food. I have been using a few small tid bits. After two or three he will walk off his kill-food and take the tid bit.(I think he forgets what is in his feet) After that picking him up is easy. It is my hope when I reduce his weight things will stay this way. Stealing is kind of easy as long as he is not over a foot away. He is kind of blind to what is going on. I am sure he can see movement but no definition. So taking what he has while dropping a small tid bit or while he is distracted is easy to do. I tried stealing or trading while he had food in his feet and got a very pissed off owl. A pissed off owl is a scary thing. I think it's all a bluff. I am sure I will find out one day. But for now I would rather not find out. Nocturnal or diurnal? I am sure this owl can see at night with good light. But with low light where I have flown some other owls he is scared of even familiar sights. An EEO is very impressive with its wings spread over his head in the "don't #@%& with me" posture. More on that another time.
08-21-2013, Update 94 days 1,488grams or 52oz He is coming around with the fist. He will now fly to the fist for small tid bits. Seems reducing the size of his reward worked well. He will now come to the fist at a good length multiple times. Most important thing is he will jump from the ground to the fist 5 plus times. He is even jumping with no reward/food as long as it is reinforced with a reward next jump. You can really take advantage of an owl not seeing well in front of his face. I had started to give him no reward for trying to carry the reward off the fist. It seems he thinks he dropped it. I kind of move away and offer it to him again. Worked nice. I am starting to reintroduce the lure. He should remember it from growing up with it in his box and eating meals off it. He does have to relearn things he hasn't seen in a while. He is smaller than I hoped he would be.(3.28Lb) He still has a bit more to grow or at least I hope. He has muscle to build for sure. I think it is time to get him killing. I have been trying to get him a bag with little luck. I don't want a bag that will sit there with that look "kill me". I have seen too many raptors get lazy from easy bags. Maning continues as usual. I take him for walks around people and let people touch him. He seems to enjoy it. The bigger the crowed the more he seems to enjoy it. I am kind of tired of it. I now know another reason my accipiters and I get along. I feel indifferent or wish they would just go away so we can do something that will benefit us. If I have one more yoga freak trying to take in his energy by doing some funky dance I am going to puke. The owl seems amused by their crap though.
He is really turning into a stark looking creature. I think we need a video thread of the yoga dudes "taking in his energy". You should let them shake hands with him, he will share his energy with them.
It is good to have an end to Journey towards, but it is the journey that matters in the End. - Ernest Hemingway
Post by shortwingn on Aug 21, 2013 18:58:47 GMT -5
echotadog If I could think of anything else other than jumping up and on the yoga peoples heads I would video them. Seriously, I just make fun of them. I will ask a friend to video tape next time it happens. My reactions and comments should be entertainment enough.
FB, He takes about the same as a Steppe eagle. Seems all Euro birds are a bit slow. I wonder why? I actually like the imprinting. Well, other than EEO SH!@t smells especially bad. Especially when you feed mice.
Post by shortwingn on Sept 3, 2013 10:57:18 GMT -5
09-03-2013 Update, 108 days 1,581 grams 55.7 oz Ozzy is doing well maxing out a creance of 300yards at a weight of 1,428. I have only flown him at dusk. He will come both to the lure and fist.(lure faster) I have flown him free twice. He chased a cat and a rabbit. Well, kind of. It did look like curiosity more than hunting but decided I didn't want him to fool around with a cat. Even if it was play. He is very slow to follow. The brush is way thick even in flat fields of sweet pea and its too hot during the day.(I wouldn't follow either) I have kind of decided to move things over to the night a bit. I am going to try letting him have flights at things off the fist at night and see how it goes. I will still fly him during the day to the fist and lure. He still has down on his front and head. His feet are just starting to feather in and his horns starting to grow. My wife tried her hand at getting some pics. The iPhone cant seen to focus at dusk and night. Neither can my wife. When we get some better pics I will post.
Last Edit: Sept 3, 2013 11:00:51 GMT -5 by shortwingn