My name is Scott and I live in Riverside. I have been interested in Falconry for a long time but have just started to take it seriously and hope to become an Apprentice one day. I had never seen a Falconer in person before until this past Monday at my school where I got to see a demonstration first hand. Which I thought was extremely cool ;D
Scott, do you go to MLK High School? If so, I did the presentation on Monday with the Harris Hawk and also brought the Golden Eagle for the students to see. Stay on this forum and ask all the question you have about falconry. There are some really good falconers on this site that will help you in any way they can. You will learn lots from this site.
raptrlvr, Yes I do go to MLK and was fortunate enough to see your demonstration. I must say both of your birds were beautiful, and you also gave a very informative speech. I just hope one day I will be able to hunt with one of my own, till then I will read as much as I can.
Scott, you honestly can be hunting with your own bird in October of this year. All you have to do is pass the test, get a sponsor and put together some kind of housing for the bird. It realy is that simple. I say October because the trapping season starts Oct 1st. If you need any help let me know or just ask anyone on this forum.
Greetings all. I was just wondering if any falconers live in Sacramento or close to that? I've been interested in falconry for a long time now and have been reading the information on how to become one, but one of the biggest things holding me back is the location as to where I live. Sacramento is pretty much suburbs and one thing that the information online seemed to have lacked was the rules regarding where you can fly the bird. Before I continue any further with this lifestyle, I have to be sure that I can fly the bird daily. Thanks in advance.
Sacramento is more open than were I live in California. There are plenty of areas where you can fly a bird and there is an abundance of game. There are several falconers in your area and the CHC holds its annual Field Meet every other year in Sacramento at the Red Lion Hotel. They just had a meet there in Jan of this year. The next CHC Field meet will be in Bakersfield at the Doubletree hotel. You should join the CHC and talk to the apprentice chair person.
Hmm. I'm surprised to hear that Sacramento as being plenty of places where I can fly a bird; I've always thought it be limited in spaces. The problem still stands that I don't have a good enough idea where fellow falconers fly in my area. I emailed Michael Harrison, the chairperson of the Apprenticeship program, to seek additional information regarding my question which I am currently awaiting a response. One thing that strikes me as a problem with attaining information of other fellow falconers in my area and where they fly is limited to only the web being that I'm not a member of the CHC yet which I dont plan to join until I know for sure that this lifestyle fits me. I mean, don't get me wrong in thinking that I'm not willing to drive to areas to fly the bird; I will as long as its reasonable and is able to fit into my schedule. Some of you may have time to drive a longs ways out to fly your bird which should be commended for, but I dont know if I will be able to. After all, I think all of you falconers agree that the birds health and happiness has no substitutions. So if anyone can help me, this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again.
I have another question that I thought someone might be able to anwser. Do majority of you guys fly on private properties, your homes, or somewhere else? And this may sound like a dumb question, the open fields on the side of freeways, is that off limits or do falconers go there? I need a general idea where flying is allowed, or where hunting takes place. I've never been hunting before so I wouldnt know what is allowed. Thanks
Last Edit: Apr 18, 2006 17:54:45 GMT -5 by mrpotato
Believe me, If you saw where I live and fly my birds you would know that the surrounding areas of Sacramento are like heaven to a falconer. What you should do is try and hook up with a falconer during the hunting season and go out whith them when they fly thier birds. The desire to be a falconer should be so strong in your thoughts that you would go to any limits to become one. Its not for everyone, but, you should have a very strong feeling to be one. No most falconers do not fly on private property and none fly at thier house that I know of. If there is a field next to the freeway, then thats where I would try and fly my bird. You are going to have to do a little driving to make this happen. The rabbits are not going to come to you.
Where can i find out more information on where It is ok to fly a bird? Right now, I can think of a bunch of places that I could probably use, but I don't know if its ok or not. Does the bird carry the same degree as a pet or as a weapon. What I mean by this is, is can you bring the bird out to fly at a park like you would with a dog or is it more like gun whereas you can only bring it out certain places? In sacramento, I 5(talking about the Laguna BLVD exit) has a VASSST open fields that could be a perfect place, but I dont think you just can park on the side of the freeway and walk out into the field to fly. I've seen a hawk flying(which seemeed like it was owned by someone) but I didnt see any cars on the side of it.
Hi mrpotato, First of all, RPTRLVR is absolutely right about the "passion" issue. When I first started I also was concerned with the amount of time that it would take and where I would be able to fly my bird. A falconer once told me, if you need to question the amount of time then it might not be for you. He also said that for a falconer, its more about "wanting" to spend time with their birds rather than "having to". Didn't understand that at first, but once I got my bird I sure did. Being with them and around them, especially when in the field hunting, is just incredible. It really becomes part of who you are. When I first thought about the off season (before I got my bird) I thought "wow, that'll be a nice break". Now that I've had a season of hunting, I'm kinda depressed that I have to wait until September to hunt my bird again.
Regarding fields, I live in Ohio, in the center of urban sprawl and I used to have the same questions as you. Now where you'll hunt will definitely look a lot different than mine, but I'd take rptrlvr's word that there is plenty of space around you. Its kinda tuff when you havent' been able to put it into context by going out with a falconer yet. -Joe
Raptrlvr and Joe have both made some excellent points. Your best bet at this juncture is to try to do some scouting of potential hunting spots in your area. If you haven't done any hunting before then it will be tougher for you, but you may be able to talk to some gun hunters (if you know any). Just keep in mind that constitutes a good spot for a gun hunter may not necessarily be as good for a falconer (perching spots, etc.).
Also keep in mind that hawking spots do need to be hundred-acre pristine fields. If you live in a populated area (like I do), you might be suprised to find out how productive places like small fields behind industrial parks, wooded areas behind schools and even cemetaries can be for hawking rabbits and squirrels.
I live in a very heavily populated area and one of my best squirrel spots is literally down the street from my house. I could easily walk there. If I am hawking on private property I always make sure to get landowner permission. I also try to be very discreet when hawking on public land. I find it much easier to keep a low profile. I try get in and fly my bird and get out without a lot of commotion.
Also, once you find a sponsor, you will undoubtedly be hawking with him (or her) and that person can help you in learning to identify which spots might be better than others. In any event, it will definitely take some effort and leg-work on your part so start looking now.