Sunday, January 31, 2010

Prepare to have your mind blown!

All of this just happened within the last 30 minutes or so....So I have the starling trap out in the back yard right....I had caught 10 or so thus far, and I peeked out the window to see if they where attracting anymore. What do I see sittin up in the tree in my back yard...a passage red tail. This was weird for sure, considering I have never once seen a red tail in my neighborhood....red-shoulders, coops, bald eagles, mississippi kites...see those pretty commonly, but never red tails. So I sit there watching it watching the starlings, and I think to myself...hm...that bird looks a lot like Dee Dee. Soooo, wild hare....I open the door, whistle, and throw my lure to the back edge of the yard (and duck back into the house).....and she flies down and grabs it!!!!!!!!! No *ucking way! Dee?????? So I open the door, and slowly start walking closer (gotta get a freakin picture or else no one will believe me), and she makes one hop with the lure, and then bails up into the tree. I run inside yelling to Lindz "Dee's back, Dee's back"! Look outside again, and she is gone. Lindz is like "do you think it's really her" giving me that look like "your freakin crazy". I don't think she believed me...anyways, so I'm talkin a mile a minute, geekin out, and freakin out, and she tells me to use my energy and go scrape the ice off of her car, so I head out front and start working on it. Suddenly a shadow crosses across the ground, and she lands in the big pine tree across the street! I grab a starling and hinder it for her, and then I toss it out in the middle of the yard yelling ho ho ho. She was on her way before it even hit the ground. She smashed it, and immediately carried it up into the neighbors tree two houses down. She tears is appart in about four bites, and then sat up there for a good ten minutes or so, before flying off. Hands down, the coolest thing I have ever experienced in my entire life. I was sitting around all bummed after our $hitty session this morning, and now I can't stop smiling! No other sport, activity, hobby, adventure, ANYTHING....nothing compares to falconry! My spirits are renewed!!!!!

Def need that confidence booster

Well....she sucked today. She was at 574 grams when we headed out to look for some birdies, and it took us a minute to find a good slip. Luckily though, one of the tride and true pigeon spots came through, and she made a REALLY nice slip on them to start the day off. There is a building that is sorta "inset" into the side of a hill, and the parking lot is surrounded by walls on two of the sides. The side road that I was driving down runs along the top of one of these walls, and she had a nice height advantage when she exploded out of the window, and folded up into a bullet. She hit the center of the group of pigeons, but I'm not sure if all the wing beats confused her, or if she just missed, but she ended up empty footed, and flew off the ground to the roof of the building. Called her to the fist, and we continued on our way. She started getting really bouncy in the car, so I'm thinking that she is getting anxious for a kill. Next slip is a group of about ten or so starlings milling around some trash bags that had been set out the back door of a pizza hut. These birds paid ZERO attention to us, and I just knew this would be our kill. Dropped the window, ho ho ho, and she flew straight up into a tree. She didn't even try...I mean....straight out the window and up. Half the birds didn't even flush from the trash they where eating. THIS was the slip I was waiting for, and nothing. Stupid bird! I'm confused....MAYBE she has decided she can't catch starlings, and that's why she only went hard at the pigeons. Well, I decided it was time for a bagger, so I found a nice spot, and planted it for her. Did our approach...she was head bobbing the whole time...window down.....she shoots up to a power pole........WTF? Call her down, and we try again. Approach, head bob, window, straight up to a tree! I'm pissed by this point. Try again....she flies up to the roof of a building. I get her on the fist, and pretty much have to throw her on top of it. It's like we are back to day one....GRRRRRRRRRRRRR. This is what I think has happened (and I'm going to get a big @$$ "I told you so" from Ryan)....she is hunting the fist now....She WAS hunting birds earlier when her confidence was high from all those baggers, but ever since we have started hawking and getting multiple slips (and I let her confidence wane from not giving baggers), she has been getting her reward from coming to the fist, not from catching birds. We MUST switch that focus back to the birds....I was so worried about getting her back after each slip, that I let her train me. She figured out that all she had to do was fly out of the window, and then she would get called to the fist for food. No more calling to the fist...only lure....and I have to get her confidence back up.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

First snow of 2010!


Well, the weather guys didn't lie this time, and Tulsa got hit with (what we call) a really big snow/ice storm. Unless you are from an area that has ice storms, most people don't really understand what I'm talking about. Thursday it started raining pretty good, and that turned into freezing rain and sleet pretty darn quickly. By Friday morning, EVERYTHING was coated in a good inch or two of ice, and that's when the snow started. I'm not really that sure how many inchs we got, but it had to be at least 6 or more. Oklahomans are natoriously bad drivers in snow as it is, but throw in a nice base layer of ice to boot, and getting out for a drive is suicide! Lucky for me though, I have a subi that just loves getting out in the snow, and I can manage to weave my way in between all the idiots. Sayda was still too high to go fly (I planned it that way), so I spent the day just hanging out with friends, and playing in the snow. Saturday morning she was at 577 grams, so I stuck her out to weather in the snow. She has only been around snow on one other occasion, so I made the decision to give her a starling wing to work on at the beginning, It didn't have hardly any meat on it, but the bone and feathers put her around 582 grams or so. Got online to update the old blog and to get caught up on e-mails, when I discovered a message from Kent....it basically had to do with snow, hawking, good times, and I should come. I had quite a few chores to take care of around the house, and even though I said it sounded like good times, didn't intend to actually make it down to Bartlesville for a session. Well....Jonathan gave me a ring about fifteen minutes later, and after SOMEHOW getting the nod from my beautiful wife, swung over to Jonathan's to pick him up. Shaung was bouncing around in the GH the entire way down to B-ville, so I was expecting a pretty darn exceptional session out of her. I suggested he think about trying for a double while we where on the way down there (being that we where getting down there pretty early, and had tons of daylight), and we also talked about how Kent's young bird is turning it on like crazy now, and just needs that one connect to get the ball roling. Like I said in a previous post...his bird chased harder the other day than I have EVER seen him fly, and it is just a matter of time before we get that squeel. Anyways...made it down to Bartlesville, and we met Kent, Ryan, and Scott out at the usual rabbit field. After saying our hellos, talkin a little $hit, and gettin the birds all beeped up, we headed into the back section of the field to fly Kent's bird. This is my first "real" snow hawkin session, and I was pretty darn psyched. The problem was, we wheren't kicking up any rabbits. They where no where to be found in the "usual" spots (which makes sense), and we walked for a good fifteen or twenty minutes before getting a single slip. We had worked our way through the two big rose bush sections in the middle, and where in the process of crossing the two track toward the lower one (with the rock pile) when Ryan spied one running ahead of us. He yelled ho ho ho as we watched it make it to the cover we where heading toward, but I can't remember if his bird went for it or not. Lucky for his bird though, we had a crew out today, and we where not about to let this little guy get away. Ryan took one side (and could actually see the rabbit sitting there), while I flushed through the center, and the rabbit bolted out of the side into a smaller bush. We waited a moment to get the bird back into position, and then Scott and I flushed the rabbit back toward the original bush. I had a huge cedar blocking my view, but apparently he dropped off the cedar like a rock, and grabbed the bunny by the rump. Ryan said he walked up to the head like a pro, and bunny number one was in the bag. He let him eat on it for a minute, and then finished him off with a back leg. Everyone was psyched for Kent, and the day had started off with a bang. Let's just say it continued on like that!!!!! Got his bird put up, and it was time for Shaung to fly. Jonathan pulled her out, and she immediately shot up to a nice, high perch. We decided to follow the tree line that runs along the north edge of the field (front section), and is boardered by the wide open section to the south, and we took off in that direction. We hadn't walked more than five minute, when I spied the first bunny. He made a little movement, but then just froze in place...sorta scooting it's body down into the snow. From my angle, it looked like a little guy, and I said we should pass him up (joking of course). Well, Shaung had different plans, and comes powering out of the tree, and slams into the brush right on top of the bunny. SQUEEL!!!!! Number one is in the bag. Being that we had only been hawkin for five minutes, and that was the only flight that had happened, we continued on. Traded her off, and she took a nice perch above us. Walked MAYBE 10 yards (tops!), and Kent kicks up a rabbit that tries to head for the briars where the first rabbit was caught. Shaung drops like a rock and nails it before it could make it half way there. Number 2 in the bag! Everyone is laughin, good times are being had, and it had STILL only been about ten minutes into the session.....so we continue on. Walk another fifty yards or so, and Shaung is sorta holding back. We are thinking she has to get her "reset" after that last rabbit, so Jonathan calls her over to us. Well...since we had stopped moving, our presence must have been too much for the rabbit that was hiding in the grass right next to us. When Shaung was about half way to the fist, the rabbit bolts, and she tucks into a dive and slams it on the ground! Rabbit number 3 in the bag! Still....Shaung has only had three flights, and didn't get near enough excersie, so we continue on. We decided to head on out through the open section since there arn't any perchs, and that will motivate her to get some actual flying in. We meander through the field, and eventually make it to the otherside in the group of bushs that run along the road. Everyone makes their way through them pretty darn quickly, but I KNOW there is a rabbit in there...there is no way there isn't. It looks JUST like the stuff we had been kicking them out of, and as the morning showed...they where holding so tight that you darn near had to stab them with your stick to get them moving. I continued working the section, and next thing I know, a rabbit bolts out of the side! Shaung comes powering off of a telephone pole, but pulls up at the last minute and land on another pole. I go in for the reflush, and she starts pumping hard off of the perch, and tuck into the perfect tear drop, spinning as she drove toward the ground, giving me the perfect view of her brilliant white under side! She smashs into the ground and SQUEEEEEELLLLLL!!!! Rabbit number 4 is in the bag!!!! I may be a little off on my tally, but I'm pretty sure that made rabbit number 31 for the season, and I'm pretty psyched for them both. Headed back to the car tired from tromping through the snow, but pretty darn psyched from having experienced such a stellar day of hawkin. Clicked off some victory photos, and then it was back to Tulsa for Jonathan and I. Dropped him off at his place, and there where starlings and pigeons on the ground. It was 4 o'clock by the time I made it home and got Sayda loaded up, and I guess it was just too late by the time we started hawkin. Most of the birds moved on too their roosts, and I only got a couple slips for her....neither of them where ones I should have taken. The birds where jumpy enough as it was, and neither of the slips where true dump shots. She ended up getting burned on both, and pulled up on both slips. The only thing I accomplished yesterday was lowering her confidence...that's all. Fed her enough to get her through the night, and she was at 578 grams when I weighed her at 7:30 this morning. I'm going to swing by Gary's house to grab one of my baggies, and if she doesn't score during our session this moring, then I will bag her to keep her confidence up.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

So darn close!!!!

Well....as you all have figured out so far....I make "plans," but I very rarely actaully stick to them. There where just too many darn birds everywhere to pass up for a lure session. She was at 570 grams this morning when I was about to head to work, so I passed up on that and headed out to do some hawkin. First slip was a nice dump shot on a group of 6 or 7 starlings, but she somehow managed to miss. A ton of crows came in, so she shot up to a tree at the end of the street. Ran over there and scared the crows off, and then she came right down to the fist. Continued on, and I found a ton of slips, but none of them where the "gimmies" that I was looking for. FINALLY, I found a lone pigeon pecking around in the dirt stocking up on grit, and it didn't seem to be bothered by me driving back and forth next to it. Flipped a "B" at the end of the road, and came back by for the slip. The pigeon was right next to the road, so I swung out left to give her a better chance. Well, I'm not sure if it was the car doing something abnormal or what, but as soon as Sayda left the window, the pigeon looked up and bolted. She made a half @$$ed attempt at it, but then checked up into a tree. Called her down to the fist, and I decided to end the session on that. The clouds where beginning to mist on us, which is a sign that the big storm was about to hit, so I just didn't want to push it. Fed her half of a pigeon breast, and then I fed her the body of a starling when we got home. She should be REALLY high tommorow, but that works out well considering EVERYTHING is going to be covered in ice, and there won't be any birds on the ground to chase. She trades off of kills like a champ, but she is still hesitant to come long distances to the lure. I will probably do four or five long flights to the lure tom evening, and then depending on the weather, may try and get out Saturday. If not, then a Sunday session will be in order. I NEED to get a kill with this bird ASAP, or else I may start pulling my hair out :). It's just a matter of time though, and once the ball is roling, I'm pretty sure the head count is just gonna sky rocket. I'm psyched!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

AAAARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGHHHHH

It appears this little girl has a super small weight range that she behaves in. Took her out for our session around 11:30, and I couldn't find very many pigeons on the ground. The only feasable slip on a pigeon was over concrete, and I don't take those. Continued on, and I found a group of about 40 or 50 starlings on the ground. She was head bobbing pretty hard, so I decided to let her go for them. She barreled out of the window hauling balls, but most of the took off when she was about half way there. I was thinking that she would give up, but she didn't! She came in really low, and then shot straight up in the air underneith one of them, and tail chased it straight into the air about 10 feet and shot her foot out. She BARELY missed, and checked off onto the ground. I whistled, and she started looking around everywhere. I reach for the lure, and she busts. She ends up in a tree across the street, and I start swinging the lure. She starts bobbing her head and leaning hard, and I'm thinking she is about to come on down. About that time, I hear a RS scream, and a passage comes hauling in from the side, and knocks her off of the branch. She takes off flying, and goes into a soar about 300 feet in the air. She cruises around for about five minutes, and then comes down into a tree. I haul over there, and she was gone by the time I got there. Pulled out the receiver, and I track her down to a clump of woods between a park and an apartment building. I "see" her up in the tree, and toss out a live lure. The bird doesn't even look at if for fifteen minutes or so. About that time, it busts, and I realize it was the passage that had knocked Sayda out of the tree LOL. I'm still getting a really good signal from the area though, so I keep scanning the trees, and discover her up in a differnt one. She bolts before I can get very close, and flies to the other side of the wooded area. I drive around, and find her on a low branch about ten feet off the ground. I start walking toward her with some food on the fist, and I kick up a rabbit RIGHT where she was looking. She takes off pumping like a bat out of hell, and she slams the brush right behind it, but comes up empty footed. I hop her back to the fist after that, and we head on home. SOOOOOOO 579 grams is still too high, and I'm thinking I need to have her at the 570 grams like she was at yesterday. Even though she flew off again and that pissed me off, her crashing after that bunny was a good sign for the future. I'm going to skip the jump ups tom, and just do five or six calls out of the trees for the lure. Hopefully, we can strengthen up her recall a little bit more, and then maybe go hawkin on Friday

FINALLY....have time for an update


Gosh.....the phrase "life catching up to you" has never been so darn appropriate as it is right now. I have been CRAZY busy, but it's about time to update the old bloggskie. Sunday was our first hunt. I don't have my log book with me, but I believe she was around 585 grams or so (maybe 580....I will have to check...) I headed to some industrial areas just across the river with hopes of finding tons of birds. Luck was on my side, and they where out in force! The first slip was a bust....three starlings on the side of the road not paying ANY attention, but she wouldn't go for them. Why didn't she go you ask? I have no clue....we continued on. Next slip found five starlings up against the side of a building. The window went down, and she shot out like she had been doing this for years. Four of the birds busted, but the fifth one just didn't see Sayda coming. She closed the gap in a heart beat, and I'm thinking this bird is toast. Well, last second, it sees her coming, and tries to fly straight up the wall. Sayda flairs, and follows the bird up on the rise, and JUST BARELY misses snagging it. I mean LITERALLY...just misses. I see her foot shoot out, and miss the bird by half an inch or so. GOOD BIRD! Call her back to the fist, and we continue on. Find another three starlings pecking around in a thin grassy strip on the side of the road, and Sayda blasts out of the window and slams the ground. I bail out of the car like a bat out of hell b/c it looked like she got it, only to discover that she had SOMEHOW missed it. I'm a little dumb founded, b/c I'm pretty sure she hit it on the ground....must not have though, b/c no startling is going to pull away from the Sayda girl, that's for darn sure! Well, I'm pleased with the day....first hunt, two great slips, she pumped hard, almost connected, and I was going to end the session on a bagger (gotta keep that confidence high!). Well, I start heading to where I'm going to toss the starling, and what do I see on the side of the road....yep....five starlings takin a bath paying ZERO attention to what's going on. I pass them, no heads look. I drive passed again....no heads look. I can't resist. Pass for the third time, and I slip her out of the window. She blasts out like a rocket and...................................pulls up immediately for a tree. I call her down...no response. Pull out the lure, no response. I rush to the subi to pull out a live lure, and turn around to toss it AND...............she is gone. WTF!!!!!! I'm kicking myself at this point....I broke the number one rule in falconry, and didn't stick to my plan. We had a perfect session up to this point, and I should have just bagged her and called it a day. Instead, I was too focused on getting that first kill, and I pushed the bounry line too hard. I got greedy, and it bit me in the a$$. To make a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG story short....we telemetry chase her for the rest of the afternoon, and I finally get her back about four hours later (25 grams heavier b/c she was buggin the whole darn time!). MANY thanks go out to Gary for dropping what he was doing to try and help find her, along with thanks going to Jeff for his concern and willingness to help out as well. Biggest thanks go to Jonathan though, who was there with his receiver in a heart beat once he learned the situation, and we had her tracked down in no time. What I fed her combined with the bugs she got (that I didn't know about), made her nice and high, so no session on Monday. That worked out well though, b/c it gave me the opportunity to meet up with Ryan and Steve, and we spent Monday and Tuesday installing cameras in a bald eagles nest. It's pretty hard to describe the feeling you get when you pull over the edge of an eagles nest, and climb inside. It was pretty darn sureal, and I was psyched that I got the opportunity to do it. Once we got everything wrapped up and made it back to town on Tuesday, it was time to do a little car hawking. Ryan has a gorgeous little female kestrel, and we where gunning for starling number two. Since there arn't really any car hawkers in Sandsprings, I have sorta laid claim to it, and we headed there to see how the starlings where doing. First slip was on the side of the access road running beside the Wally world. She shot out like a rocket, and slammed into the starling on the rise (maybe three or four feet in the air). It looked pretty darn solid, but the starlings SOMEHOW managed to escape. Got another slip soon after which she got REALLY close on, and another one that was pretty good as well. Later on, we pulled up to a stop sign, and there was a lone starling pecking around on the side. Four or five cars drove by, and it didn't lift it's head once. We finally got a break, so we pulled along side and slipped her out the window. She jumped off his fist and immediately turned into a bullet. She dropped out of the window and just smoked the little bugger! I ran out and grabbed them, and we drove to an out of the way spot to take some hero shots. What was REALLY cool about this starling, is that it had a huge white spot on it's head. I havn't ever seen that before, and I thought it was pretty tight. Well, it was starting to get late, but we thought we would try and get a slip or two for Sayda. Drove around for a bit, but it was just too late for them. Roosting birds arn't hawkable, so I decided it was a good day to introduce her to pigeons. Up until this point, the only birds she has come into contact with where starlings, but being that she is showing tendancies to want to carry, I decided I needed to switch focus to pigeons for those fist few kills. Sayda showed ZERO hesitation as she pumped out the window and nailed the pigeon, and at 575 grams (or was it 570...I will have to look), she was acting the way she should have been. I approached and she didn't try and carry at all....GOOD BIRD! I wanted to reward that, so I offered her a tid bit, and she jumped right off the pigeon for it....BAD BIRD! Gonna need to stop doing that. She hopped back on it pretty quickly, and that's when it happened. My stupid a$$ knows she is footy little thing, and I KNOW she gets pretty amped up on kills. Well, I rushed her, and went in for the dispatch, and she nailed me HARD!!!!!! This footing made Dee Dee's stuff feel like love taps, and my hand was completely covered in blood by the time she let go (which took a cool minute). Stupid apprentice!!!!! All in all though, Ryan was pleased with her behavior (this is the first time Ryan has been pleased about ANYTHING related to Sayda in a cool minute...), and it was nice to get the "good job nod" from him (about the bird...NOT the footing incident...that he laughed about!). Fed her enough to put her at weight for our session today, and if the slips are happening, then I'm hoping for our first kill today. We have a BIG storm moving in, so if she scores, I will feed her up nicely, and aim to have a session on Friday....if not....I will feed her enough to put her at weight the next day, and we will do a hundred or so jump ups in the garage.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Saturday's Adventures


The day started out pretty gloomy. Had the rain held out, the plan was to meet up around ten or so, and we where going to get down on some serious hawkin. Well, the weather didn't want to cooperate, so we didn't end up getting to the field until around 1:30 or so. We had a big crew for this session...Ben and his family where in attendace, Tom, Kent, Jonathan, and of course...myself, where all in attendance, and some bunnies where gettin chased today. When we got there, an interested couple asked if they could come along, so being the accomidating people that we are, welcomed them along. We started out at one of Jonathan's fields, and let me just tell you....this field was rediculous!!!! I thought we already hawked in some pretty thick stuff, but this field was on a whole different level. The briars where all head high at least, and they where WIDE!!! Rabbits where found in great abundance, but they kept slipping away from the Shaung at the last minute. Eventually, we made it to the edge of the field running along the high way, and one of the rabbits made a bad move. Instead of cutting back through the briar patch, this rabbit thought the best course of action was to leave the thick cover, and shoot across the grassy mowed section. Shaung had been observing from high atop a bill board, and she dropped like a rock and slammed the rabbit into the ground. Squeels where heard, out of shape falconers where running, and there was much rejoicing from all. Jonathan let her eat a bit on the kill, and then he traded her off to the lure, but not before we clicked off a few hero shots. After that, we headed off to one of my fields to fly Kent's young bird. I decided it was a good day to try out the Rosa Parks field, and I was psyched that we could finally fly a bird in there. We took the scenic route to get there, but we FINALLY made it to the parking lot, and we headed off into the field. I'm not sure if it was the moist conditions or what, but we didn't manage NEAR as many rabbits as I normally do when I'm running the dog. Still though, we had a great session, and probably managed at least 8 or so slips. Hands down, Kent's bird flew harder than I have ever seen him fly. He only pulled up on maybe one slip, and the rest of them he crashed for pretty hard. He damn near caught three of those rabbits, and it blew my mind that he didn't end up scoring. Still though, it was a good day, and we ended the session with some feather reinforcement. I'm thinkin this bird is about to turn on, and then bunnies LOOK OUT! It's going to be sweet!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Pretty good

video
Well, my predictions where off, and she was at 595 grams again. We did a moving baggie, and she did pretty good. Let her eat quite a bit on the ground, traded to a well garnished lure, and then hopped her to the fist for the rest of the starling. She will be nice and fat tommorow, and I'm going hawking with all the buddies. Going to try and hunt her on Sunday (I think), and hopefully we will get some nice, easy flights for her.

E-mail update

I will no longer be available on my work e-mail, but can always be reached on my yahoo account. All the best
-D-

First Free Flight!

Well we FINALLY got off the darn creance! It's about time...I know! Got home after work, and she weighed in at 595 grams. The plan was to do a few calls to the fist, and then fly her out of the car window. I was wanting to do it with the car moving, but yesterdays circumstances just wouldn't allow for it. Did a call or two to start out, and her response was just so so. She never tried to fly off or anything, but she didn't have that keyed in focus that we have been having (makes sense...she was QUITE a bit higher than we have been flying at...). Flipped the creance off of her, and did a few more flights across the yard. I didn't want to push my luck, so after that, we flew out of the window. I think she is starting to connect the game call with food, and when I started saying ho, she started looking around pretty intently. She saw the starling, and almost went after it immediately, but then she noticed the cat that was watching from across the street. She kept looking back and forth between the starling and the cat, but after a few moments, flew out and grabbed the starling. She missed on her initial slip...not really sure what happened, but then she flipped back really quickly and grabbed it. She is going to need to improve on her aim pretty quickly :). She was looking around pretty good, but I was able to approch without any carrying attempts. Let her calm down for a moment, and then I traded her off to the lure. I dragged her pretty close to the base of a tree, but I guess she still felt too exposed, b/c she dragged the lure the remaining five feet under it. Once there, she immediately started tearing at the lure, and when she was finished, I "hopped" her to the fist.....I say "hop", b/c it was pretty much the full distance of the yard. Yesterday sorta confirmed some behaviors that I have been noticing, but hadn't figured out the direct factors that contributed. I had been thinking that she is just REALLY darn nervous when she is out in the open, and just doesn't feel that secure without the cover of trees. This further confirmed my theory, and this is going to prove problamatic, being that most of our car hawking slips are going to be out in the open. I am going to have to get her REALLY solid on the whole situation in the next few days, b/c I DEF don't want to create a carrier. I will have to talk stratagy this afternoon, and I'm hoping for a great session today. After the session, we sat on the pole perch unhooded for the rest of the evening, and Sayda slept that way through the night. This morning, she weighed in at 607 grams, so that should put her around 585 grams or so this afternoon, and I think (if we have a great session), I'm going to feed her up pretty darn good afterwards....probably enough where we won't have a session on Saturday, and then MAYBE go hawkin for the first time on Sunday....I am going to have to call Ryan and talk game plan though.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I need to grow some!

Kent shot me a line early yesterday morning about doing a little hawkin, but it just didn't really seem like it was in the cards. Took the old lunch break, decided not to work Sayda (Complete side note...Sayda NOT ONLY means "fortunate" or "extremely lucky" in arabic....but it ALSO meants "huntress"....crazy coincidence huh!?!?!?) till later in the afternoon, and got back for "Beer Wednesday" around one. Killed a few brews in VERY short order, and then I got a call from my new buddy Tom. It didn't take more than "we should go hawkin sometimes soon" before I was out the door, and meetin up with him. We loaded his Peregrine up into the subi, and we where off to Bartlesville, and arrived around three or so. Kent was already in the field, and we joined in on the brush beating. He had already walked some of the areas to the south, so we decided to hit up "the" rose bush, but didn't manage a flush. It was decided that the rabbits had been hanging out in the more "open" area to the north, so we headed off through the field. Long story short....we had quite a few REALLY good slips, but his little guy just wasn't commited. He kept pulling up, and just didn't really commit to any of the slips. Looped through the back section, and he FINALLY started making some decent goes, and actaully decided that crashing for rabbits may be a good thing. Had a couple slips in a row where he just barely missed, and I think his new found motivation may have come from the approaching darkness, and he wanted something warm before the day drew to a close. No rabbits where scored though, and Kent had to go meet up with the "hay guy," so it was time to train some birds. Tom pulled his bird out, and did a short creance session with her. She is BEAUTIFUL, and I'm looking forward to seeing her slaughter some stuff one of these days. Sayda's turn to fly, and she was all business. Didn't try to fly off at all, completely focused, instant response....it was gooooooooood! I could have easily flown her free...but i just didn't. Tried giving her a starling out of the car window.. Unlike yesterday, when she hammered one from the same distance, she was really hesitant today, and it took some coaxing. There are a number of factors that could have been involved....first...the starling previously was in the back yard, and she is really comfortable back there. Second, being that this was the first time out of the car window, I should have done it a lot closer....she did 40 yards or so previously, but I should have pulled it in about ten or so (since it was a new spot, and a new situation). Also, there really wasn't much cover where I placed it, but she just didn't seem like she saw it in the beginning....probably should have made it blatently obvious for this first time out the window. Lastly, I just flew her on the starling the other day...no calls to the fist or anything, and yesterday....we did a lot of calls to the fist for quite a few tid bits. She may have gotten to many, or I may have brought her focus so much on me (combined with the tib bits), that she just didn't have the motivation to go grab it, when easy food has been coming from me. Over all though, it was a good session, and she has finally figured out the name of the game. Now that she has, I'm going to push her up a little bit in weight. Got home, it was time to work on the pole perch. Tied some meat and tirings on the top to keep her focused, and stuck her on there. Guess what!?!?!! She worked on that, and then sat there WITHOUT BATING for a good couple of hours. Maggie was eating all of the dropped food below the perch and she didn't even bat an eye at her. She ended up sleeping up there last night, and was happy as a lark when I hooded her back up this morning. SUCCESS!!!!! Still have a ways to go before we no longer have to walk on egg shells around her, but it is progress. Our first wild kill is so close I can taste it!!!!!!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A little high

She was still high from the session the other day, but low enough where I wanted to do SOMTHING with her, so we did another starling. Unlike the other day when she needed to think about it, her response was instant. She made a 40 or 50 foot flight to it, and grabbed it by the head. She didn't try to carry this time, but she still did a lot of looking around (that made sense though, being that she was so high). Trade off was better than last time as well, and I hopped her to the fist for the head and a leg. Now that she is "sorta flying," her burn rate has adjusted, and I'm still keying it in, but I'm thinking she should be about five grams lower than our session the other day, and I plan on flying her in out out of the car window. I'm going to see if I can get my buddy to hold the "T' perch, and stick tid bits on it for me. That way I can stay in the car during that phase, and we can get a lot of back and forth calls between the two of us. We shall see how it goes. If she won't respond to his whistle though, then I will have to do it the slow way....hopefully everything will work out.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Not too bad....

Well, the plan was to go back to work........didn't really happen. Got home, and she had cast...weighed in at 585 grams, and it was off to twin peaks to meet up with Ryan, Kent, and C...... (can't seem to remember it right now...). Had a nice brewskie, and then we all headed over to Jeff's house. Got all the birds loaded up, and we headed off to do some car hawkin. Being that both school and work where out for quite a few people, there where crowds EVERYWHERE! There where starlings and grackles flying around and down on the ground, but just couldn't manage to keep them on the ground long enough to slip....people where everywhere! Sooo, we headed up north a little bit, and drover around some of the more "industrial" areas. Found a nice slip in short order, and she shot out and grabbed him like a pro. Headed back to pick up my car, and Ryan introduced his new kestrel to starlings. He wasn't sure how she was going to react to it, but she was off the fist instantly. After that, it was time to pull out Sayda. We went to the lowes field, and I pulled the subi up nest to the grass. The plan was to fly her in and out the car window, but that plan broke down pretty quickly. Pulled the hood off, and she grabbed her tid bit like normal...then she bated. Recovered, and I put her down on her perch. She wasn't focused, and was VERY hesitant on the recall. Tried her from the roof rack, same thing...we had some bates in there too if I remember correctly. I can't figure it out...she SHOULD be spot on. I put her up, and say it's a no go. Ryan tells me I'm rushing her, and to get her out again. I do what I am told, and she does better. Call her to the fist a few times, and then it's time to see what she thinks about starlings. Well....it took some coaxing, but I think her response will be dramatically different next time. She did PRETTY good on the trade off to the lure, and I think she will keep improving as long as I don't do anything to screw it up (fingers crossed). She got a couple rat legs on the lure, and then I hopped her to the fist for half of the starling breast. She worked on the wing the whole way back to Jeff's house, and we didn't have a single bate! Now that I think about it....this may be one of the highlights of the day...first encounter with the car unhooded, completely postive...I think it's a good thing at least. Anyways, she weighed 617 grams when I stuck her on the scale at 7:30 PM, and she will be high for our session tommorow.

Oh yeah!

Yesterday was a GOOD day! Got some of my house cleaned, which it drastically needed, and I had the rest of the day to do what I wanted. Sayda weighed in at 610 grams, so I didn't really want to have an outdoor session...instead, we did jump ups in the kitchen. This bird has A TON of zip, and she was all about this game. I fed her five grams, with hopes that she would be at 595 grams for our session today. I plan on flying her in and out of the car window, and I'm hoping she does awsome! I have been having ZERO luck catching fresh food for this bird. Both Jeff and Gary have loaned me noose carpets, and I havn't caught a single bird. I was out in the back yard yesterday, and I just decided to put the starling trap out. It was about 3:30 in the afternoon, and when I checked back on it at five or so, there where TEN starlings in it! Oh yeah! Weighed her before I went to work at 6 this morning, and she was at 593 grams....the sun needs to freakin rise!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

FINALLY!!!!!

Had a perfect session today! She weighed in at 596 grams when I stuck her on the digi around noon. We had our session out in the front yard, and it was like I was flying a different bird. She had total focus the whole time (even with cars driving by, people stopping to watch, friends standing around, etc, etc), and we maxed out the creance a few times. Total, I probably flew her across the yard 15 or 20 times, and she had EXCELLENT lure response. I finally feel like we are getting somewhere, and I hope to have her chasing stuff sometime next week. I'm going to fly her in and out the car window tommorow and Monday, and if everything goes as planned, I hope to be chasing some birds by the middle of the week. The big eagle watch was today, and Heather and one of her friends came down for it. Afterwards, everyone headed to Bartlesville, and we got to fly Kent's, Heather's, and Jonathan's birds. It was good times for sure, and Shaung scored rabbit number 24 today!

Friday, January 15, 2010

update

She weighed in at 605 grams at noon today, and we had a pretty good session. We had quite a few flights, and a few of them where the full length of the creance (about 30 ft). We had one little episode in the middle, but it ended up alright. She had AWSOME lure response, and I'm feeling really good about that. She should be around 600 grams tommorow.

Almost dialed in

Didn't really have a session yesterday, but we saw improvement.....Sayda was at 616 grams when I pulled her out in the afternoon...there was a difference in her behavior for sure. She didn't try to fly away at all, and that is def improvement. I got about five or six flights out of her, before she lost her focus, and started looking around. I put her up as soon as I saw her look around once, so we avoided anything negative. She was only out about three minutes or so, but it was good. She should be just above 600 grams when I work her at lunch today, and I'm hoping we have a full session of perfection. If she behaves the way I think she will, I think we will max out the creance, and have zero bates. FINALLY we are getting somewhere despite all of my screw ups!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Session #2

MUCH better! Took Sayda outback, and I stuck a tid bit up on a perch. She hopped up to it, and then turned around and looked straight at me. I back up to about five feet....whistle, and she is on her way FAST! Nails the glove, and grabs the tid bit. Take her back toward her perch, and she flies the last foot to it, and turns around! NICE! Ten feet.....pulls off at the last minute. Call her to the fist off the ground for no tid bit, and I stick her back on the perch. Go back to ten feet...whistle, and she does it! Good bird! Continue on, and I get another 15 or 20 flights out of her ranging from 10 20 feet. We only have one other bummer moment, and that's when she was flying back to her perch from about five feet away, and I stepped on the %amn creance. That jerked her to the ground (which set her off!), but once she stopped tearing at her anklets/jesses, I hopped her to the fist...after that, she didn't really want to fly back to the perch...I think I will do a few tid bits on the perch today, and that should bring her confidene back up. Anyways, it was time to end the session, and that's when the high weight was evident. I tossed the lure out, and she IMMEDIATElY jumped off the perch for it. Slammed the lure, footed it a couple times, and then bolted. Huh? Hop her back to the fist, and I present it again....does the same thing.....hop her to the fist, and I hold onto her for a minute. Stick her back on the perch, and I toss the lure about twice as far as I had been.....She immediately dropped and stayed on it. How close I was to her mattered, and her focus should have been on eating. The whole session, she got about 20 grams or so....That should bring her down 7 or 8 grams from this session, and I'm hoping that will get her a little more tuned in.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Log update


Yesterday was pretty darn good for creance session number two. She was at 645 grams, and she had good response to the fist. When she was focused....she was totally focused, but when she would loose it, it was GONE. I'm not really sure why, but if I get more than ten feet or so from her, she just looses it, and tries to bolt...there are a number of factors involved I think....for starters, she is still high. She just doesn't have that keyed in focus like a bird at weight does. Also, she doesn't have enough confidence in coming to the fist yet. She just hasn't done it very many times, and I think she just needs a few more reps. Also, she is still just really jumpy....most of these issues should resolve themselves wih a little weight reduction and repetition. Ended the session on the lure, and I think we are just about to make our break through with that as well....Only fed her 15 grams or so, and she was at 637 grams today at 3 PM. The same thing was happening...perfection as long as I didn't get too far away, but would pull up at the last minute if she was coming in too hot. Only gave her two or three grams during our five minute session, so I'm hopin the "reset" will work, and she will do better when I workher again in ten minutes or so. Sorry bout the bad pictures...

Saturday, January 9, 2010

WARNING! Slightly more graphic than normal...Weekend Sessions


I normally don't let her break in, but needed to this time...b/c of this, the pictures are slightly more graphic than usual, but hey...it IS a falconry training log. Friday, she did alright.....she weighed in at 649 grams to start out the session, and due to some nonsense, I had to work her in the garage. Had great response out of the bird the whole time, so I tossed a quail for her. She nailed it with pretty much zero hesitation, and we had a perfect trade off to the lure. Hopped her to the fist for half a breast and the wing, and we ended the session on that note. Saturday was a GOOD day! Kent and Emmerich came down to Tulsa, and after dealing with the plumber in the morning (the pipes to the hot water heater burst!), I met them and Jonathan out at the expanse. We kicked around for a little bit, but the RT was still too high, so we decided to head down to bum central. Headed over to the open section in the front without getting a single slip, but one was quickly kicked from the front rose bush. The bird didn't see it though, so we continued on. A few seconds later, Jonathan kicks up two beetween the first and second clumps of trees, and I'm pretty sure she made an attempt at one of them. Tried for a reflush, but didn't manage to get one. Headed back toward the creek, and I think they got another slip in that section (I had taken the hill side, and since I had the thick beanie on, just couldn't really hear anyone). Crossed over the rise, and we got another slip as we where walking toward the strip of woods running along the high way. Jonathan and I took the deep section, while Kent and Emmerich took the edges. Apparently we where kicking up a rabbit the whole time, and it was just running along ahead of us. The bird went for it once, but sorta messed around after that. It was pretty thick in there, and he seems to start lowering his perch as the woods get thicker (still a baby bird....caught a JACK though, which I forgot to mention...congrats Kent!!!!). We decided to hit more open sections to encourge him to take a higher perch, so we cut back toward the road. After checking out a pond I had never explored before, we hit the backside of the big open area with the briars running along the east. Jonathan got a slip in short order in the middle of the briars, and the bird did a fly over, but just didn't commit. We made it all the way down the field, and started following the briars out into the center. Kent and I both hit in a section with out flushing the rabbit, but as soon as we passed, it broke for the tree line. The harris came down fast and hit the rabbit. It got away, and the bird remounted and snagged it after only a couple hops. the rabbit started bouncing around, and managed to buck him off after a few seconds. It escaped into a rat nest, and I went in for the reflush. When I jabbed the nests, a rat comes shooting up the tree, and he starts chasing that around the branchs. I hear a rustle shooting out the side toward the briars running along the road, so I assume that was the rabbit. Finally got the bird out of "rat" mode, and we beat the rest of the way up the briar patch. No flushes where had, so Kent took the high road on the ridge, and we started following the brair patch along the road. A rabbit is kicked up, and the bird makes a pretty good attempt at it, but comes up empty footed. Continue on, and we kick up two rabbits, but the bird doesn't see them. Decide to put the harris up, and we pulled Jonathan's RT out again. We headed off into the thicker sections, and we get a slip as we start to enter the first open section. She misses, and flies up in to tree, and we get another couple of slips in the open section boardering the fence. Continue on toward the "Big" rose bush, adn we only manage one slip. The rabbit was literally stairing at me from a few feet away. Jonathan and I pretty much poked it before it busted! Continued on back, and after only getting one more or so, we make it to the honey suckles running beneath the power lines. They start heading along those, and a rabbit is kicked out from the side. The RT makes a great chase at it, but it ends up bailing into a stick pile. I mark the spot, and head back and into the woods. I come upon where I think the rabbit is, and the bird is on a branch about ten feet above it lookin straight down. I go in there, and poke my stick around, and the rabbit shoots out the back! The bird comes off hot, and slams the rabbit on the ground! I start running, and get all tangle up in some vines, but eventually get there to find the rabbit securely in her grasp. Jonathan has a nice tade off to the lure, and we head back to the cars. Since we had a nice warm rabbit and all, we thought it was a good time to see what my bird thought of them. Jonathan was kind enough to let me use it (thanks buddy!), and so we headed to the "Wilson" fields to fly my bird. This was the first time she has been outside, so I was def rushing things, but I thought I may as well, so I pulled her out. She was higher than I wanted at 657 grams, but over all, she did alright. I hopped her to the fist a few times, and she only tried to fly off once. Did a couple more calls, and then I produced the rabbit. She didn't have any clue what she was supposed to do with it, and it took some coaxing to get her to jump to it. She tried to fly off a few times, but eventually caught on, and started footing on the rabbit.. I opened it up, and let her eat on it for a bit. Produced the lure for the trade off, and she acted like she had never seen it before. I guess the open rabbit was more appealing, but after shaking it in front of her, she decided to hop off the rabbit for it. After she finished the lure, I hopped her to the fist for a front leg, and we ended the session. DEF is going to need to be lower for rabbits that she will be for birds, but that is sorta to be expected. Now she knows what they are at least, and she will have some sort of idea what's going on, once we do actually start chasing them. Am going to have a creance session outside this afternoon, and hopefully, she will do great! On a side note, Lindz FINALLY named the bird! She picked "Sayda", which means "super lucky"

Friday, January 8, 2010

Still a little high

She was at 1056 grams when I weighed her over lunch, so I moved the session back to around three or four. She had had a nice cast, and if she is around 1053 grams for her session today, she should be really responsive. Fingers crossed for perfection!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

We are getting close....


Headed home on the lunch break, and I stuck the crazy girl on the scale. She weighed in at 651 grams, so I was hoping for a good session today. Struck the braces on the hood, and pulled it off of her....Whistled, and she grabbed her couple of tid bits. She was fired up today, and after I set her down, immediately jumped back to the fist. That was a little annoying, so I set her down again, and started walking away. Got about five feet, and she was on her way. She did this freakin like seven or eight times! Eventually, she figured out that coming to the fist when she isn't called doesn't get her anything, so she stayed there and waited. Got to the other end of the garage, and I called her. She was pumping toward be before I even finished the whistle, and was on my fist in a flash. Stuck her on a block of wood, and I headed to the other end of the garage.....she hopped up onto one of the rails for the garage door. Dang it! I whistled, she was on my fist in a flash. Got a couple more garage lengths with instant response, then she flew up to a high perch again. Whislted, and she came right down. I have decided she has a CRAZY short attention span. She will be focused in completely, but if I don't call her pretty quick, she tries for a higher perch. I stuck her in the GH, and let her calm down for about ten minutes. Pulled her back out, and we got four or five instant responses across the garage. Also did a couple tid bits thrown to the ground, and then she hopped back up. She again, wanted a high perch. Hopped up ontop of the fridge, and started looking around like she was going to fly agian. Whistled, and she flew down to the fist. Couple more flights, and then I presented the lure with the front half of a rat on it.. She hasn't had any casting material for a little bit, so it was time she had some. She was hesitant again on it though, and it took some coaxing to get her to hop down for it. Hopefully this bigger feed on the lure will help strengthen her lure response some. She is all about it and agressive when it's given to her, but she is pretty weak on the call to it. I think she would trade off a kill to it right now, but I don't think I could recall her with it...if that makes sense. She is a talkative little thing, and I really enjoy listening to her little chirps and chitters. Her leg is looking better, and if it heals like the other one, then it should be good to go in four or five days. I'm hoping it will be quicker though, since we have the improved anklets, and she is a little lower in weight (won't be messin as much hopefully). Anyways, depending on the wind tommorow, I may try and do a few quick hops to the fist outdoors....we shall see. Got back to work, and there was a nice hag RS sitting in one of the pine trees next to the building. We had been sitting right next to it for a long time, and didn't even see him sitting there. A crow flew up to a branch above it, and that's what made me see the RS. I LITERALLY walked right underneith it when I took these pictures. It was just sitting there watching us! If I had had the quail in the car, I could have tossed it out for him, and I guarantee he would have come out of the tree and gotten it!

Red-Shouldered on Crows

Saw something pretty freakin cool yesterday. I had just finished up eating lunch with Lindz, and I was driving down the road that runs infront of my work. There is a group of three or four crows down on the ground, and all of a sudden, a passage red shouldered comes blasting out of the air, and nails one of them on the ground. They start wrestleing around, and she gains control of it really quickly. The other crows start dive bombing her and screaming, and within a few moments, their cries draw in another four or five crows. Most of them land on the ground and start circling her, while the rest continue stooping her from the air. They sit on the ground for maybe five minutes or so, and every time the RS tried to move or eat, they would move in on her. Eventually, the hawk had enough, and bailed up into a tree. The crows follow her to the tree, and eventually flush her out of there as well. Last I saw, they where chasing her out of sight. It was so intense to watch! I hope my bird is half as ballsy as this one was, b/c she was continually grabbing at all the crows when she was on the ground. I think she would have taken them all on, if there wheren't so many cars driving by, and she wasn't pressured by me (I pretty much just pulled over right next to them...). Red shoulders are so awsome! I'm psyched for a good session today!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Lure response is improving


Stuck her on the scale when I got home from work, and she was at 666 grams. Had our session in the house, and she did pretty well. Pulled the hood off, and she behaved well. Pulled the lure out, and she hopped down to it after a moment. She then started footing it, and bouncing around on it, so I'm thinkin she is starting to like it more. Didn't have much food on it, so after she finished quickly, I hopped her up to the fist for a couple tid bits. Put her on the pole perch, and she sat there nicely. Gave her a tid bit, and then I walked out of the room. I heard her bate, but when I looked in, she had regained the perch perfectly. Continued on doing stuff in the other room, and I would occasionally walk in there, and if she didn't bate, would give her a tid bit. She was bouncing around pretty good though (always regaining the perch), so I didn't leave her on there very long. Once I was down to the last tid bit, I picked her up, and stuck her in the GH. Not really sure what was going on with my camera, but as you can see, all the pictures came out bad. Bad pictures are better than no pictures though, so here are a few.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Day of Progression


Got a LOT of stuff accomplished today! Started out like any Monday morning....slow! I'm not big on Mondays to begin with, but being that my company is "switching focus, and heading in a different direction" (which entails them closing my department....thus laying ALL of us off!), I was even less motivated than usual (That's right....time for the shameless plug....anyone out there have a job opening?????). Anyways, Ryan and the girls had gotten back to town, so I shot him an e-mail, with my birds legs as the main topic. It has pretty much been decided that the bating was not what caused the scale damage....this became pretty evident when it continued getting worse while in the GH. This was further confirmed, when I pulled her out of the GH this morning, and the OTHER leg had damage on it (we didn't have a single bate yesterday....)! I had come to the conclusion that I must have made the anklets too tight when I had put them on initially. My line of though.....if the anklets arn't rotating properly, then that would account for why it was getting snagged on the scales, and why I was seeing irritation on the legs. I'm thinking that she is sitting in there, picking at her anklets, and she is just yanking the crap out of them. The "too tight" anklets are getting snagged, and the scales are getting damaged. Anyways, I tell him that I'm going to swap them out, and he suggests that I try roled anklets....D*MN! I never thought about those! Makes perfect sense though....no edges means nothing to get snagged on...good call sponsor! He also told me to stop screwing around, and to get this bird down to weight....My train of thought, was that her being higher would hasten the healing process (apparently not)....unfortunately, keeping her higher also kept her nervous, bouncy, etc, etc, and was putting her in the position to further damage her legs (along with slowing the whole training process, giving me more opportunities to teach her bad habbits, and giving her time to loose all her muscle mass)....stupid apprentice!!!! Hind sight...this is one of those "duh" things, but I just didn't get it...What pisses me off the most though, is that I was having a discussion pertaining to manning, and how little progress is made until the bird drops some weight JUST last week on a forum....I understand the concept, I can even explain it in a semi intelegent sounding fashion, yet can I practice what I preach....NO! I'm tellin ya....I think I just have a blind spot, when it comes to my own falconry. Anyways, we had talked a little bit about this yesterday, so I had already "slightly" started bringing her down, and she was at 671 grams around 3:00 this afternoon. Ryan had informed me that her usual bate to start the session was unacceptable...he explained that something (or someone....me!) is causing it, and I need to figure out why, and to fix it. He suggested some tips, and I started trying to put them into practice during yesterdays quick session (which worked! No bate!!!!!). I continued on with this today, and got her unhooded AGAIN without a bate....SWEET! Hopped her across the garage a couple times with great response, but then she got distracted....she hopped up onto a shelf, and just started looking around everywhere like she was about to book it. She did this b/c she is still too fat, so I picked her up, and set her back down where she should have been. Gave her a tid bit to bring the focus back onto me, and then hopped her to the fist one last time. Pulled the lure out, and she SORTA looked at it. I picked it up in my hand, wiggled it a little bit by her feet, and then tossed it back to the ground....she hesitated for a few seconds, and then flew over to the lure....wasn't as quick as I was expeting, but she flew further for it than last time, so progress is progress. She was at 691 grams at the end of the session, and Lindz and I headed off to Bartlesville for some good times. Took a little longer than we anticipated to get Parker all packed up and on the road, but we pulled into town with about thirty minutes or so of daylight left. Dropped my babies off with the girls, and I met up with Ryan to do some quick trapping before dark. Got a couple tosses, but no commitments, so we picked up some pizza and beer, and headed back to his place. After grubbing down, we pulled the bird out, and Ryan informed me that the anklets where, in fact, NOT too tight (so much for my theory), and that she must have just been yankin the $hit out of them. Got the new anklets on her, and I'm thinkin they will work out really well. Rebraced a hood (b/c I need to give the hood I'm using right now back to Gary), did some chillen, had some good times, and then it was back home we went. Made it home, and it was time to work on the pole perch.....pole perch Version 1.01 didn't perform the way it should have, so it was time for version 1.02. Changed the design of the perching section, and swapped the base for an old Christmas tree stand....it is really darn heavy, and hopefully she won't be able to tip it over....if she can though, then I will swap it for four boards going out the sides....that won't look as good though, so HOPEFULLY my new design will work great. So summary....my mind is at ease with her new anklets, had a good session, rebraced a hood, AND fixed the perch....not too shabby for a Monday! Since I fed her 20 grams during our session today, she won't be ready tommorow until the evening. All I'm going to do is fly her down to the lure, hop her to the fist, and then put her on the pole perch. I will tid bit the rest of her rations over the rest of the evening (when she is behaving on the perch), and will be aiming to have her in the high 650's on Wednesday. If her behavior has improved the way I think it will by then, then I think I will bring her down a little bit more, and creance her outside on Thursday.....big plans...we shall see what happens

Saturday, January 2, 2010

1st hop to the lure

Stuck her on the scale just a little bit ago (9:30 PM), and she weighed in at 682 grams. Popped the hood off, and she did her usual bate. Whistled, and she grabbed the couple tid bits off of my glove. Set her down, and got instant response to the fist. Put her down again, and she bated off towards the side....slut! Put her back, and she hopped instantly again. Got another instant response out of her, and then she hesitated for about five seconds on the last one. video Presented the lure, and after a bit of hesitation, she hopped down to the ground for it. Let her eat up on it, and then I hopped her to the fist for a big chunck to end the session. She is still high, but I'm going to continue on like I have been, until her leg is all healed up. Once that happens, I will drop her the rest of the way down to where she should be, and we will be able to progress the rest of the way through our training. Shot a short little clip, so that you all could get a better look at her without the hood on