Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Flying Into the Vortex

I heard that this cold spell is called the Polar Vortex. Quite the intense name, isn't it? Here in Veryork, low temperatures and high winds make for some unpleasant times outside, but it's nothing to fuss about. I feel lucky to have a warm fire, kind dogs, and a crock pot with chili waiting for dinnertime. Really, that is all we need around here! So I am all set, but that doesn't mean I get to tuck into a book and blanket and ride out the cold indoors. Even when chores are done and the animals are set up to ride out the chill - I still have a hawk to tend to.

Every day I work with Italics, getting him ready to be my hunting partner. Today we worked outside in the wind and did some basic lure training. He already knows to fly to my hand when I offer it to him with some yummy bits on it, but now he needs to learn that the lure is even better than my hand when it comes to a full gizzard. The lure is so important to a falconer, as it is the insurance policy to take into the field. When Italics learns that every time he goes for that lure he gets a full crop he will rarely (I hope, never) turn it down in the field when he is flying free. So we worked outside with the lure. I baited it with a piece of duck fat (feathers still on it) and he flew down to it and ate his fill, feathers and all. I'm hoping when he casts his pellet tomorrow morning he fondly remembers that lure!


Blogger Ngo Family Farm said...

He's just gorgeous, isn't he?!

January 8, 2014 at 11:50 PM  

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