Friday, October 30, 2009

Day 18 & 19

Doc is probably more ready for free flight than I am.

The last two days he's been flying 100' to the lure, instant response, catching it in the air. He's very steady on the ground, allowing me to walk up and tid bit him on the lure and steps off to the glove with no problem. He's only tried to drag the lure away once and I was probably a little too fast walking up to him.

He's spending the day on his shelf perch unhooded and still takes the hood well. I usually hood him while he's eating on the glove.

I'm still undecided on my next step. I'm leaning towards putting him on a kite for the first week of free flying. I think it will help keep him close and will help to establish a good routine. We'll see.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Day 15 to 17

We've had our ups and downs this week. I moved to football field at the local middle school and the first day there Doc threw a fit.

The moment I pulled the hood off he looked around, looked at me and bated like a wild bird for several minutes. I finally got him back on the glove and tried for a short flight but he didn't want to play at all. I took him home and did some tid-biting on his perch.

I spent most of the weekend at home working with Doc. He spent the weekend on the shelf in the living room, unhooded, and I did a lot of tid biting after his morning training sessions.

Sunday and Monday he did great at the football field making a few short flights to the glove then a few 20 - 30' flights to the lure.

I've heard all the stories about these super tame tundra peregrines that train up in two weeks but I did NOT trap one of those. I would say Doc is quite a bit behind in training and in tameness than a passage merlin at the same stage. But he is progressing every day.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Doc, Day 14

Day 14, 445g

Doc is sitting the fist well, and still hooding well.

He made a 20' flight to the lure yesterday in the back yard. Tomorrow I'll have to move to a larger area to continue his training. He ate a quail leg on the lure then walked over and hopped up to the glove.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Doc, Day 13

Day 13, 448g

When I got home I unhooded Doc and let him sit on the shelf perch for a few minutes before training. He was much more attentive and stepped up to the glove for a few bites. I weighed him and he hooded with out incident.

I set up a block perch and creance in the back yard for our first outside lure flight. Doc was unhooded and placed on the block, I sat 10' away. I threw a garnished lure on the ground between us and he immediately hopped to the ground and walked over to the lure. He ate the quail wing and a few tidbits from my fingers and jumped up to the glove when he was done.

A perfect lesson for the day.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Doc, Day 12

Day 12, 453g

Doc was a little slow to fly in the back yard yesterday. He eventually made a 20' flight then another from 15' much quicker.

I hooded him up and took him back inside and introduced him to the lure on his shelf perch. He ate what was left of a quail wing with some meat on it. I gave him a few tidbits on the lure.

He still has the terrible habbit of not regaining the fist on his own after a bate. I have to put him back on the fist after every bate. He's still a little nervous and doesn't like to be touched but he's getting calmer every day. He also doesn't sit well on his shelf for very long. I'm keeping him hooded at night and when I'm not home.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Passage Peregrine

Ok, I'm going to do my best to blog the training and hunting with my new bird. I was lucky enough to trap a tiercel passage peregrine in Maryland. For the first time since 1970 the USFWS allowed the capture of 36 passage peregrines for falconry this year.

Florida did not get their rules in place in time to participate this season so I was left with applying for non-resident take in one of the state that were participating. I applied to 5 different states and was only selected by Maryland. So, it was off to Maryland.

Diana and I drove the 15 hours all through the night to get there first thing in the morning to trap. And we were lucky enough to find a tiercel that came down to a ring-necked dove in a noose harness.

Doc was trapped at 500g on Oct 11th. He ate on the glove the first night back at the hotel in a dimly lit room.

He was hoping to the glove on the 17th and made his first flights outside 20' yesterday.