Falconry is an ancient method of capturing wild quarry using trained birds of prey. A great deal of time and knowledge is required to train the birds, keep them in prime hunting condition and feed them all year. The fastest creature in the world, traveling at speeds over 380 km/hr. during a high altitude dive, is an awe inspiring sight to behold.
Realizing the public interest in viewing this amazing spectacle, owners of a local business (Wild Birds Unlimited) teamed up with a group of local falconers to watch a hunting Peregrine Falcon kill a duck on a local slough. Paddy Thompson, the caretaker of this bird named Fanny, released her and up she flew to become a speck in the sky. His dog was then sent into the slough to flush the ducks into the air. Aiming with laser-like precision the falcon came streaking out of the sky, striking the duck and killing it as it landed in a canola swath. It was a truly impressive sight to see such a skilled hunter in action.
Here you can see Paddy has recovered Fanny after she killed the duck. Note the ever helpful dog looking for a morsel of the duck to eat.
A question and answer time followed where we learned a great deal about the art of falconry and the intricacies of caring for the birds and teaching them to hunt.
Fanny eating a portion of the duck.