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Birds of Prey

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Birds of Prey

Post  littlewid on Fri Apr 30, 2010 10:38 pm

This is the home for all things Birds of Prey. Please share your pictures, knowledge, information, chat and links here. Feel free to open a new thread but please check to see if there is already a thread relevant to the information you are posting. Please open your own thread for any personal pictures that you would like to share with members.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Guest on Fri May 14, 2010 2:03 pm

I look forward to the posts on this thread as i know absolutely nothing about birds at all. I know there is one that dives really fast to catch it's prey but i can't remember what it is called.

Mx

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  whitestarling on Sun May 16, 2010 11:27 pm

This is a site you might like to look at when you have time Minty its an Australian one
Australasian Raptor Association

http://www.birdsaustralia.com.au/the-organisation/australasian-raptor-association.html

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  tigerburnie on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:29 pm

Hello all,just joined the forum,was directed to it from the bbc's springwatch forum.
I'm an ex falconer,who still has a passion for watching all wlidlife,but particularily birds of prey.I live in Scotland,a perfect place to see almost all of our birds of prey.Within close proximity of my home there is the release area for re-introduced Sea Eagles,nesting Golden Eagle,Goshawk,Peregrine Falcons as well as numerous Buzzards,Sparrowhawk and the visiting Merlin and Hobby.Kestrels also still breed in the area with some success.Marsh and Hen Harriers are in the area,though infrequent.Owls include Long and Short eared,Tawny and a healthy Barn Owl population too.No little Owls this far north,though not too far away we did get a stray Snowy Owl show up once.Migrants include the rare Honey Buzzard which still nest in the highlands(though I've not seen one)Rough Legged Buzzard are also seen on occassion.Our most popular migrant is of course the Osprey,I watched one catch it's tea last sunday at the rspb's Loch of Kinnordy reserve.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  littlewid on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:57 pm

Hello Tigerburnie

It's wonderful to have you here, I am sure you will have lots to contribute on our birds of prey thread. If it's not too rude to ask, how come you are an ex-falconer?.
I work at a hospital on the South Coast and obviously we have alot of Seaguls around the place, so to humanly keep them at bay we have a Falconer who comes in a few times a week with his Harris Hawk to fly over the hospital, he does seem to keep most of the gulls at bay but a few stubborn ones still visit very frequently.
I had the pleasure of meeting the Falconer and his hawk once and what a beautiful bird he is, he was very handlable and a real delight, I had such a smile on my face that day.
You have such a variety of birds around you, do you have any pictures that you could share with us on site, some of us have a keen interest on birds of prey.
We have been following two peregrine falcons on site from the laying of their eggs to the hatching and fledging, they were Dorothy and Tasha2, they both had live cams focused on them and it was a delight to see them, all chicks have now fledged so the cams are closed.
I am glad you found us and hope you enjoy the site and look forward to all your Bird of Prey news and pictures.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Safari Maiden on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:02 pm

Fabulous list of Birds there Tigerburnie. My hubby has always said though he loves the Peregrine, the one bird he would love to see in the wild is a Hobby. I like the smaller birds - Kestrel and Merlins particularly.

If you have any photos of your sightings it would be great to see them.

Great to have you onboard.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  tigerburnie on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:31 pm

I'm an ex falconer for a variety of reasons,firstly my old Saker called Rusty(she had a rusty coloured patch on the back of her head)had to be put to sleep after a nasty infection got into her feet,vets couldn't cure her.
Also,and I stress this quite a lot,birds of prey take over your lives.They need constant handling or "manning"and you can hardly ask the neighbours to feed it whilst you pop off on your holidays.We had a caravan and the falcon came with us.We went on a boating holiday on the Norfolk broads and the bird went with us.They are without doubt the single most demanding animal you could keep as a "pet".
As I'm now 60,a new bird could out live me and I don't think any of my family would fancy taking over the responsibility.Plus of course,I'm not really up to hurdling five bar gates chasing after an errant bird that won't comply with my wishes.
Happy to talk falconry,or more correctly with owners of hawks "austringers"talk and also about wild birds.Please understand I will be vague about exact locations as unfortunately some trawl these sites for locations,for all the wrong reasons.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  tigerburnie on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:46 pm

Safari Maiden wrote:Fabulous list of Birds there Tigerburnie. My hubby has always said though he loves the Peregrine, the one bird he would love to see in the wild is a Hobby. I like the smaller birds - Kestrel and Merlins particularly.

If you have any photos of your sightings it would be great to see them.

Great to have you onboard.

SM

Hi,depends where you are in the midlands,I used to live in South Derbyshire where occasional sightings of Hobby were around.They love hawking for dragonflies,as you may have seen on spring watch.So that's the place to see them,small gravel pits or similar pools of water,or even a canal if the foods there.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  littlewid on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:53 pm

Thanks for sharing that with us Tigerburnie. Not having personally owned a bird of prey I can only imagine the commitment you have to give to one, as you say, they are not easy to be left behind when/if you go away, all animals can take over your life but its easy t find someone to look after them or there is always kennels and catteries but not so for birds of prey. It must have been hard to make the decision not to have another one though as I imagine you build a very close relationship with them.
Hurdling gates can be difficult even at a younger age but chasing an errant bird that you love dearly puts an extra strain on the hurdling I imagine.
Please do not worry about not putting locations on here for the birds, we quite understand, we all have to be respectful and cautious about our birds and other wildlife that may be put at risk, we are here to enjoy them and keep them safe, not to put them in danger, so we totaly respect your comment.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Safari Maiden on Sun Jun 27, 2010 2:38 pm

Thanks for the info TB. I completely understand and respect that you would not give details of bird locations. I know were there is a wild Peregrine and if ever asked I would say, for their protection I will not say.

I can see how looking after one of these birds it would take over your life. I wonder is this why people that have taken on more than they can cope with just release captive birds.

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  tigerburnie on Sun Jun 27, 2010 5:31 pm

Safari Maiden wrote:I can see how looking after one of these birds it would take over your life. I wonder is this why people that have taken on more than they can cope with just release captive birds.

SM
I don't think birds are released on purpose as they are still quite expensive,there was a day when you could buy falcons and hawks for very little money.Captive breeding fed the demand and in the 1980's when there was a lot of yuppy money around,falconers appeared from everywhere and prices rose accordingly.
Birds of prey are,like most predators,animals of habit and instinct.Not really"clever",but just very good at what they do,they would starve if they weren't.
Falconers "manage" the natural instincts,you can't really teach them anything.If you consider the size of a birds head,then imagine the size of the brain if you will.
Birds usually get lost because of the following:-
poor weight management,over fed bird will not respond to the owners call for it to come home(or some similar words).
(which then leads to)...
poorly managed bird,they must be handled on a daily basis,after a couple days at a vets my Saker did not know who I was.
the bird takes fright and is lost and can't find it's keeper
finally and quite commonly,the bird just decides it's time to migrate to somewhere the feeding is better(common with warm country birds like my old Saker)

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Guest on Sun Jun 27, 2010 6:18 pm

Welcome to the site Tigerburnie and thanks for contributing so much to the discussion. I really value your insights.

I am head over heels for Raptors as old Safari Missus explained. Being responsible and knowing work commitments would affect my ability to man a bird, I've resisted the temptation to train properly and own one.

My falconry will (sadly) remain limited to visits to centres where I can hawk walk and fly falcons between glove and perch. As Safari Missus said, I adore Peregrines and would love to see a Hobby. But she didn't mention the way I go silly over Red Kites.

Work frequently takes me down the M40 and I get to see lots of Reds soaring and swooping. The record for me was seeing no less than 16 playing on the wing barely 20ft above the carriageway, diving at each other and taking imaginary prey from each other (presumably practising for stealing food from the local crows). For me they are the most stunning of birds in both colouration and flight.

It would be great if we could meet up when we're next in Scotland. Perhaps you could guide us for some photo opportunities and teach us some more about Raptors. There is so much I need and want to learn.

Looking forward to some of your Raptor stories soon!

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  whitestarling on Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:33 pm

TT this is a link to the Red Kite feeding station in Mid Wales if your ever in that area
http://www.gigrin.co.uk/
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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Anne-Marie1981 on Mon Jun 28, 2010 9:52 am

TT. We had the most amazing Red Kite playing in the breeze over my parent's house yesterday. I was just driving up to their house and happened to see it. We must have spent 20 minutes watching it. Couldn't believe the size of it and how low it was getting. My mum managed to get some fantastic shots of it so I will have to get them off her and pop them on here. It was eventually chased off by a crow, of all things, good old fight going on.
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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  whitestarling on Mon Jun 28, 2010 12:04 pm

cheers Cant wait to those Photos AM
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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Anne-Marie1981 on Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:42 pm

Here are a couple of my Red Kite photo's! I'm on a mission to get the ones my mum took as they are a lot better.



Excuse the ariel


Being chased off by a crow


Sorry they aren't great but thought I'd post them!
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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  Laikipia on Thu Jul 08, 2010 1:19 pm

Wow how lovely to have seen a Red Kite - lucky you. Wonderful photos as well. These poor birds of prey are always being mobbed by the crows, ravens, jay and jackdaws What a Face

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Re: Birds of Prey

Post  littlewid on Thu Jul 08, 2010 7:33 pm

You are lucky Anne-Marie, i've never seen one so it was really lovely to see your pictures, its so nice to build the bird of prey thread with different pictures of all these magnificent birds so thank you for posting them Very Happy

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our raptor sage the owl

Post  Eurasian Guy on Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:32 pm

hi our owl sage (meaning wisdom) does take a lot of time & management, i am often asked do they make good pets & i guess the answer is they do if they suit your available time, commitment & maybe lifestyle i.e. if you’re in a bedsit better to have something which suits like a goldfish or hamster rather than a large dog maybe & of cause something which suits your personality & remember some of these birds have long lifespans in Sage's case up to 60 years in captivity.
i have put together some info on our owl which you may find interesting as there are pictures & info not normally widely seen although I will upload some pics on here soon.
See all the w's. twinmoorview.com if interested.
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