Male Haggard Kestrel

So I finally caught a Kestrel, as per my falconry apprenticeship requirements.  At first, waiting for the bird to show up felt like  anticipating a bus you weren’t really sure stops here.  And looking for it’s approach with binoculars that caused a bit of queasy when sweeping the sky for two hours.

Then it was hard to believe that any wild creature would fall for this clumsy trap I constructed with an on-sale basket from Michael’s.

And I was just giving up the 3rd day when who should come flying towards me as if waiting to meet me the whole time?  It was Ambrose.  So named by boyfriend, I know not why.

And now, he sits on my glove while I type one-handed, and we are trying to bond.  But though he is cuter than a button, I’m not getting warm fuzzies from him.  Instead his intense unblinking stare looks more like incredulity.  “Really? I’m not saying a thing.  I demand to see my lawyer.  When do I get my phone call?”

No amount of reasoning seems to help; that he’ll be getting health care, safe housing, and good grub.  That this is temporary and he will be free to go in about 8 months.

No, this is a cynical bird.  And that’s why they tell falconers to get young impressionable birds.  Birds to whom you need not prove your worth because they are so excited to get free food.  Haggards are what you call adult raptors.  And this one is … haggard.

My last argument is that staying with me will be like a falcon spa.  He should relax and enjoy, because he’ll be so gorgeous when he hits the streets that the girl Kestrels will all want him in their nests.

But maybe he’s heard this before.  Maybe he’s already been a falconry bird and was released.  Is this some kind of Falconry Recidivism?

 

 

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