Monday, May 3, 2021

It's been over for a while

It was a good season in spite of a huge pause in the middle of it. Both of my hawks had personal bests on their respective quarries. 

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Solving a minor problem

Official USFWS cable tie band at left, commercial band at right

My Harris's Hawk Farrah was banded when I got her. The band was installed without its clear protective tube; soon it was unreadable. I cut it off, sent it to authorities, and they sent me another with a different official number. Changing numbers bugged me a little. With a Harris's, it means the Baywing database has to be updated to be accurate. Even installed correctly, in a year or so, the legibility starts to degrade, which defeats the purpose of the band. 

You can solve this problem legally without changing numbers. Buy an aluminum split band, with the same information engraved and install it on the hawk's other leg. Don't remove the original official band; if you do, legally you must notify the authorities and they will send you a new band with new number. 

Federal Regulation excerpts:

(i) If you take a goshawk, Harris's hawk ( Parabuteo unicinctus ), peregrine falcon ( Falco peregrinus ), or gyrfalcon ( Falco rusticolus ) from the wild or acquire one from another falconer or a rehabilitator, and if the raptor is not already banded, you must band it with a permanent, nonreusable, numbered U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service leg band that your State, tribal, or territorial agency will supply.

(iii) If the band must be removed or is lost from a raptor in your possession, you must report the loss of the band within 5 days, and you must then do at least one of the following:

(A) Request a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service nonreusable band from your State, tribal, or territorial agency that regulates falconry.

(iv) You must not alter, deface, or counterfeit a band.

The link below directs to my source for the new band. There may be a domestic vendor too. The ring only cost me $15 delivered.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Farrah in convertible jesses......


2/26/2021 - He's back


Excerpts from texts: Cisco has been at weight. He is back catching a squirrel each outing.  I've had a harder time getting an English Muffin out of the fridge than Cisco had with this squirrel. I put him up, realized I had to grab his tidbits from the Honda, and saw him drop to the ground. He's back in his groove. Four out of the last five hunts, after 21 straight shutouts....

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Today and yesterday afternoon

Tough day for Cisco. He caught two squirrels yesterday afternoon, but the first bit him in the face and he let it go. Undeterred, he caught another about fifteen minutes later. We've taken a squirrel three out of the last four hunts, roughly his typical performance. Until this run, we only caught three since mid December! Today Cisco left house at 902 grams, after hunting a bit on the lowish side two days before. He is now in a good weight range, and it shows. 

I hunted our near Brookshire with Farrah. She did her usual good job catching game. On the way back in the drizzle, she tried to snag a bird. We both thought she had it. 

Monday, February 8, 2021

Doubling up

 I have decided to hunt with Cisco daily until he catches a squirrel. He is now close to a good weight, and performing well enough. 

Had a busy evening hunt with Cisco. We probably would have taken a squirrel home if I hadn't run in on him yelling my head off when he caught his second squirrel that bailed from the tree near the creek. Not sure what I thought I was accomplishing. I think Cisco decided he was dealing with a madman and just released it. He actually looked like he had it OK. We hunted for about two hours, lots of chases. He was 955 grams when we left the house. Out tomorrow afternoon. Arnold was superb.

A Bald Eagle flew over the woods while Cisco was chasing a squirrel. Cisco flew to a tall tree to watch and I decided it was a good time to end the hunt. Cisco watched the eagle fly off and went right back to chasing the same  squirrel.

Tomorrow no morning hunt, just an evening hunt with Cisco, Farrah out the next morning.

Cisco and Arnold after I
made him release the squirrel

A good morning with Farrah. Breezy, she had some good flights and she caught game.