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2014/15 Season


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It's nearly time to start hunting again, my hawks about two weeks away from being brought out again. I'll try and keep an updated diary of how the season goes for us. I've started getting the pointer

I was late getting back from work today and by the time I'd grabbed my hawk and gear it was almost 7 pm. With the light starting to fade in an area of heavy cover I wasn't expecting much but she was k

It's been too windy to do anything this week and my season is over. I power washed her aviary out and changed the window bars and AstroTurf. It feels strange putting her away after a seven month seaso

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Thanks lads.

I'm not done quite yet and had a look out tonight with fourtrak73. She caught a rabbit but it dragged her around the field and then pulled her into a wall. It was kicking her when I got to them but I couldn't grab it before it pulled free. She then flew a few rabbits half heartedly and I think she had got banged up a bit on the wall. After a rest she seemed to pull round and look keen again. She got to take a few feral pigeons in a barn and I was pleased to see her looking up into the beams so that's another thing she's learned.

Back at the car we tried one last field and she got to catch a rabbit which I let her have a good feed from. Brilliant night.


Kill 123


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I was dying over the weekend after going to a charity thing on Friday night so didn't do anything except fly her around a few fields. She missed a rabbit and a rat just before dark yesterday but flew into a patch of cover and after a bit of stabbing about with her feet lunged forward and caught a vole.

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To be honest I was ready to stop a month ago but I thought I might as well potter about until the end of the month because the carp won't be feeding hard yet and the boats I go on aren't catching anything I'm bothered about yet. She's getting put away on Sunday and believe me I won't give hunting with Hawks a second thought until August because I'll be too busy fishing, which I probably enjoy more than hunting.

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It's been too windy to do anything this week and my season is over. I power washed her aviary out and changed the window bars and AstroTurf. It feels strange putting her away after a seven month season when Ive been thinking about weight, weather and what and where to fly her every day.

This season has gone OK and I feel I've done enough to justify keeping a Harris Hawk. Last season was terrible but this time around mates have gone out of their way to get us onto good land. I said at the end of last season that if things didn't improve for us I would give it up. Whilst I know we can get better Im feel that I got out hunting with her just enough. I still need more woodland to hunt through as it would let us get something done in windy weather and I should have tried to do more lamping. We have had a few good hunts on Squirrel but nowhere near the amount I would like.We also didn't go after hares. So there are still areas where we could do more. We never went for numbers and are happy with a couple of kills for each hawk when we've gone out, the rabbit poulation is still low compared to years ago but is better than it has been for a few seasons. Hopefully they will continue to grow in number as it has been hard at times to find enough quarry for the two Hawks to fly at. My mates hawk has went well and it has been good to have another hawk out with us.


Anyway my hawk ended up with :-

69 rabbits

29 rats

3 squirrel

8 moorhen

6 pheasant

1 wood pigeoon

5 feral pigeon

1 partridge

5 voles


She also caught a fifteen things that she didn't hold onto long enough until help arrived. This was usually just bad luck catching them in awkward places like water or getting dragged into dry stone walls. They don't count but I still kept a record of them as its part of the game.


I've only scratched the surface of what can be done with a Harris Hawk and I believe we will do better next season.

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With out doubt one of the most interesting threads on THL ...I'm laid up at the moment after getting a new knee , so bored to tears I've taken to reading sections I normally have no interest in , the falconry section is now my favourite section on THL !! ..the work & patience put into these birds is something else . ........pointer & ucanthide , top posts on THL ..I'm looking forward to your next season ..

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Cheers mate, I started reading falconry books eighteen years before I bought a hawk. That's a long time to want to do something, some years I didn't think about it much as I was busy doing other hunting but it was always there like an itch you can't scratch. I think I put too much pressure on myself last season as I didn't want to fail at something I'd waited so long to try. I'd also built an aviary where I used to have kennels and for the first time in eighteen years I didn't have a terrier so it was a big sort of life changing time for me.

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It may have been life changing but you seem to have grabbed the chance with a totally professional stance , until I started reading these threads I had no idea what effort & commitment you needed to put into these birds , both training & General care ..having had terriers , shot fished & stalked for forty years these threads are a real eye opener ..The pinned thread with the young fella & his old man was an absolute pleasure to read , credit to him & his dad ..as said I'm looking forward to your next season ..

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I must stress that flying a harris hawk takes up no more time and requires no more money or dedication than any other hobby does.( If that hobby is done to a good level anyway). You have to think about things more and plan ahead and the weather plays a bigger part than it does in other hunting. I have the advantage of working a ten minute drive from my home and have somewhere to fly my hawk close by. This allows me to fly my hawk for between twenty minutes to two hours after work for much of the season. My local spots have low rabbit numbers and if I'd been flying a hawk five years ago I reckon it would have had twenty to thirty more kills and a lot more flights than my hawk did this season. I can travel to good hunting grounds but even then rabbit numbers are low compared to previous years, and I'm talking drastically lower. Hundreds of rabbits lower. We used to be able to catch as many rabbits in a couple of hours with good hunting lurchers than my hawk caught throughout this thread from September to March. That puts some perspective on how low rabbit numbers have become where I get to hunt.


I think most people could find the time and money etc to fly a harris hawk if they wanted to but a lack of quarry and acres to hunt over would make it difficult for many people to succeed. I'm lucky that a few mates went out of their way to get me onto land where we could at least be guaranteed to find a dozen or so rabbits which made flying two Hawks this season possible. If I'd had to rely on local spots close to home I think id have had to seriously think about giving up. At the end of the day these Hawks need stuff to fly at regularly.

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