Simone Cook is a long time falconer, has served as director and coordinator for many
falconry associations across North America. She holds a degree in biology and is an
expert at raising, caring for, training and hunting with birds of prey! Join us as we
learn all about hunting with birds of prey, what it takes to care for and keep them and
how you can get involved and become a falconer yourself!
● 00:12 Introduction
● 02:00 Hello Simone!
● 03:05 What is Falconry and how did you get into it?
● 04:38 Does your bird bring its prey back to you or do you go to it?
● 05:28 We went on our first trip when I was 8.
● 06:36 Don’t become a falconer, it’ll take over your life.
● 07:36 You need a permit, there are 3 levels: apprenticeship for 2 years - graduate to
general class for 5 years - graduate to master falconer.
● 09:20 Why do you use ferrets?
● 10:34 Confusing species.
● 11:40 Your first hunting trip!
● 12:57 Misconceptions
● 14:45 Males are smaller than females, they are very vocal when they fight.
● 17:24 Modern problems for raptors.
● 18:19 Do you hunt for food?
● 20:33 People have been using falcons for hunting for 1000’s of years.
● 21:43 The origins of falconry
● 22:23 Hooding the bird.
● 23:53 Where do you get the birds from? Do you grow them from eggs or just use
● 25:15 General and Master falconers are allowed to take a bird from a nest in the wild.
When raised from so young they imprint and form a bond with the falconer.
● 25:53 Tell us about the species you use.
● 28:42 How many different species have you worked with?
● 29:02 Bird abatement - keeping pest birds away from agriculture
● 31:07 Are these birds all native?
● 31:43 Are eagles used?
● 34:25 We have great respect for the quarry (prey).
● 35:09 Do you ever feel bad when your bird kills its prey?
● 39:19 Are they territorial?
● 40:46 My Red Tail reacting to another Bald Eagle
● 43:03 Do people use birds for fishing?
● 44:43 When starting, are there easier to work with species or are individuals unique?
● 45:49 You NEED a permit to do this. You need to pass an exam as well as a sight
inspection - this is highly regulated.
● 47:03 Most people start with Red Tails but tend to let them go after a while
● 48:05 They have personalities and are highly unique!
● 48:58 The results really depend on being able to read your bird.
● 49:53 Tell us about the facilities for keeping falcons.
● 50:38 How do you look after the birds and how do you train them? 2 main seasons:
hunting season in fall and winter and off season in summer.
● 51:50 They malt over the summer.
● 54:54 You don’t need to make your birds hungry - their hunting instinct is enough.
● 56:53 Why doesn’t the bird just fly away?
● 58:10 What do you do to train them?
● 59:39 Using lures
● 01:01:53 How do you develop your relationship with the bird?
● 01:02:41 They start as wild animals.
● 01:03:35 Strobe lights?!
● 01:05:56 Training trust.
● 01:09:30 Do some birds just fly away?
● 01:11:13 I’ve even lost my bird, we use telemetry (a transmitter) to keep track of them
if they get lost.
● 01:14:14 They revert to a wild state very easily.
● 01:17:43 Is the training process dangerous to humans?
● 01:19:56 Have you been bitten before?
● 01:22:48 Tell us about the talons.
● 01:24:57 Take us through a Red Tail hunt for Cottontails and Snowshoe Hares.
● 01:31:27 How fast do Red Tail Hawks fly? Peregrine falcons go over 200MPH!
● 01:33:48 Veterinary treatment: Acupuncture?
● 01:37:31 Which species of bird gives the most impressive hunt?
● 01:38:08 Do they impact and knock out their prey?
● 01:42:08 How can people get started and involved in falconry? Join a club and
contact your authorities. There is the North American Falconers Association