Thanks to my kind brother (Thanks CRAIG!!!), he has let me borrow his Cannon Rebel for the summer while I am up here in the Santa Cruz Mountains. I can’t thank him enough, because I’m getting some AWESOME photos of hawks and birds. I had the delight of working with a falconer last weekend for the project I’m on, and I got to see two U.S. birds I would never be able to see in the wild, with one from the Middle East and another from Africa! I was of course, geeking out like a mad woman because what more would you expect from me, right? Of course.
It was quite the experience. I mean I GOT TO HANDLE A SNOWY OWL!!!! I just about died…and we all named her Hedwig…for you Harry Potter fans out there (Where I am not one of them, haha).
Here are some of the other birds that we got to work with throughout the day!
This is an Augur Buzzard, which is actually a version of the Red-tailed Hawk from the U.S. I knew it was a hawk/buteo the second it came out of the truck but I must say…a bit more gorgeous with the white than the red-tailed hawk. Ok, that’s a bit crazy of me to say because I really love red-tailed hawks, but yeah.
This is a Harris’s Hawk. I have seen another one of these in captivity but this one I got to get super up close to. The coloring and just fierceness of this bird is amazing and striking. I couldn’t get over the depth of the brown on this bird and of course, it was so cute when fluffy!
This was the bird of the day, until I saw another one a tad bit later. But I have never seen a Snowy Owl in my life. Amazing I tell you, AMAZING! She was in a bit of rough shape but still as majestic and beautiful as i would have ever thought. And the fact that I got to hold her?! Jumping for joy I tell you! She was much heavier than I thought she was!
This bird I would never see in my life! It’s a Barbary by Saker Falcon Hybrid. Try saying that five times fast! It looks very similar to the Prairie falcon that we have here in the states though. She was very majestic and sat very quietly on her perch waiting for us to play with her! But the last bird, was what struck me as the best of the bunch. I have never seen this bird in the states either, but I’m counting this one!
This, is an Aplomado Falcon.
The color and just it’s presence had me in a stammer for words. I can’t even begin to describe it. Something about this bird, makes me believe it’s the boss and no one should mess with it. I mean, come on, you never want to say no to that face!
I really enjoyed being able to see these guys (and girls) up close and personal. It’s one thing to see a species right there in your hand versus through a pair of binoculars.
I can’t help but thank the falconer a 1,000 times for letting us use his birds. I was totally geeking out and enjoying every minute of it!!
Anyone every see any other falconc’s/accipitors!?