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  #21  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:11 AM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

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Originally Posted by TomOlivia View Post
It's not the quality of the bird as a quarry and yes, they are delicious, more it is the fact that there are bloody millions of them and they make themselves obvious to any gamehawk at a respectable pitch. Controlled flights on them, where the hawk isn't drawn away to distant but more visible ones, and stays focussed on you whilst on your way to flushing the small group of half a dozen that you are intending on, would be very hard once he becomes good at catching them and knows of their delights

In all seriousness Johny, I've taken a few woodies that had they been the intended quarry, would have been great flights and if they could be found in small groups a bit like game birds can be, they would probably be worth trying.

I lost my two best hawks after they checked at distant pigeons, one of them after 5 seasons and hundreds of great flights on Partridge and Grouse, the other in only his second season but already a beauty duck hawk

If you work it out, please let us all know what the secret it

Regards, Michael.
Hiya Michael. I'm back in the world of the living.

The secret, is to carry one live pigeon with you at all times. The failsafe, contingency lure.
It works... until it doesn't.
Are you on that Facebook thingy? Is that you under "Australian Falconry"?
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  #22  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:18 AM
CloakDaggerTiercel CloakDaggerTiercel is offline
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Johnny,

Its just a case of whther you think you can secure enough slips at woodies with your tiercel where they will hold. I know a friend who has flown them regularly out of thick hawthorn hedges and thickets, and many times they have held very tightly in little copses when I have been flying ducks and have clattered away when they really had to. Luckily for me Ive never really had a peregrine that went for them, but I do spend alot of effort making them to game, which they totally commit to at the expense of other quarries/check.

Tiercel peregrines become very bonded little hunters, if you build that bond with success (that being kills) and you can get decent flushes at pigeons at close range, your tiercel is just as likely to stay with you as strike for the horizon.
Its what tiercels do.
Ive flown quite a few decent tiercels and they seem to prefer the partnership approach than being naughty.
Anything with gyr in it is likely to give you more grief as they are half gyr and burning a distance horizontal is what they like to do.

Ive flown ducks in areas where there are ducks milling about in the sky in the locale, but with experience the tiercel learns that its best chance of a full crop is to work with you. It comes naturally to peregrines that seem to treat hunting with a bit more of an analytical mind than a hair trigger response. Thats why they wait on over gun lines or over quartering harriers.

Many of the comments against pigeon hawking come from people very much coming from a game hawking slant and how it could negatively affect that and thats fine, but if it is pigeons or nothing then give them a go, if you can make the calculations and come up with some slips, then have at it.

Why not, we've found a way to successfully fly most other bird species out there. The pigeon is the most natural of quarries for a peregrine. It's purely a falconer glass ceiling that is preventing us developing the flight, and of course local limitations in ground make up.

If I had enough places where I could get them to hold. Id give it a go for sure.
Just like any other quarry like ducks, or partridges, its not enough just to have numbers, but to have them in the right places.
They would be a super quarry, but for me, I just cant come up with the volume of slips needed to make a go of it.

It may go wrong with you falcon being a bit wild and wooly at first, or it could right and your tiercel could find a system of flying that birngs success, and that is as likely to involve waiting on over you as not.


Nick
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  #23  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:32 AM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Hi Johnny,
I asked a similar question ages ago & all the posts advised against it, most saying the Pigeons will lift as soon as they see the silhouette of the Falcon & it will eventually end with long track downs & a lost Falcon. It's a shame really with the numbers & I don't think anyone would refuse permission for such a Quarry.
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  #24  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:43 AM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

This is a really interesting thread as it is a pipe dream that I have mulled over a lot. Flights at pigeon would open up access to so much more ground, extend flying beyond the game season and is readily available and would provide a welcome supplement to game hawking.

The problems already expressed on this thread are all there, but are they surmountable? You will have to be able to remove your gamehawking head completely. Re-a$ses your goals, tactics and field craft completely......

My thoughts are along the lines of using a falcon that waits on closer than your average game hawk peregrine. I had thought about a lanner, but having seen one in action this year I am not yet convinced. Maybe a tiercel or pere/hybrid that hasn't been trained to take a pitch, and that waits on close? Also, a falcon that is flown one flight an outing that is brought directly back to the lure if it fails to kill for a full reward will be less inclined to go off self hunting, a method that I have seen used with success on crow falcons.

We have all seen pigeon sitting tight in trees and bushes when its too late to get up and away from a falcon over head. My thoughts are to engineer the flight so that a falcon is slipped at distance and brought over a set up that meets requirements yet to be defined (it will take trial and error to do so) whereby woodpigeon are inclined to sit it out in a tree or bush rather than take flight at the first sign of a falcon.

A time ago I had a gyr/saker that refused to take birds on the wing, he would take them on the rise or not at all, his preference was actually ground game. This worked really well as a pigeon falcon as he would fly sneaky, ambushing pigeons out feeding from behind trees etc. Either he took them on the rise or not at all and would return directly to the lure. Unfortunately he was killed before I properly appreciated what I had with him as I was so focussed on the discipline of crow hawking that made me believe that he was useless. If only I had thought outside of the box sooner!
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  #25  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:44 AM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

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Originally Posted by Perebrine View Post
Hi Johnny,
I asked a similar question ages ago & all the posts advised against it, most saying the Pigeons will lift as soon as they see the silhouette of the Falcon & it will eventually end with long track downs & a lost Falcon. It's a shame really with the numbesr & I don't think anyone would refuse permission for such a Quarry.
Hi Johnny,

they're not inclined to hold under a falcon when in the open, but they'll certainly hold in cover.
Often I use isolated patches of cover to shield my approach to partridges, flush pheasants from similar areas, or flush ducks from ponds with surrounding cover, and I can almost guarantee to flush woodpigeons ahead of the intended quarry.
It's possible to make those flights daily, but because of the associated problems in areas like mine with high populations of woodies, it would soon go badly wrong.
That said, a less high spirited falcon than a peregrine could be put to good use at them, as has been done with lannerets and others.
It could be great fun (which is after all of some importance), it's just not for me.

Best wishes,

Tony.
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  #26  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:46 AM
TomOlivia TomOlivia is offline
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanadaManada View Post
Hiya Michael. I'm back in the world of the living.

The secret, is to carry one live pigeon with you at all times. The failsafe, contingency lure.
It works... until it doesn't.
Are you on that Facebook thingy? Is that you under "Australian Falconry"?
No, never been on facebook. Hope things are all good in Canada and maybe catch up at either the Alberta or Sas meeting in 2015?

Thanks for the last batch of batteries aswell. Regards, Michael
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  #27  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:46 AM
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Hardcore Hawker Hardcore Hawker is offline
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Good interesting thread Johny! And that's from someone with zero interest in flying longwings
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  #28  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:50 AM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Quote:
Originally Posted by CloakDaggerTiercel View Post
Johnny,

Its just a case of whther you think you can secure enough slips at woodies with your tiercel where they will hold. I know a friend who has flown them regularly out of thick hawthorn hedges and thickets, and many times they have held very tightly in little copses when I have been flying ducks and have clattered away when they really had to. Luckily for me Ive never really had a peregrine that went for them, but I do spend alot of effort making them to game, which they totally commit to at the expense of other quarries/check.

Tiercel peregrines become very bonded little hunters, if you build that bond with success (that being kills) and you can get decent flushes at pigeons at close range, your tiercel is just as likely to stay with you as strike for the horizon.
Its what tiercels do.
Ive flown quite a few decent tiercels and they seem to prefer the partnership approach than being naughty.
Anything with gyr in it is likely to give you more grief as they are half gyr and burning a distance horizontal is what they like to do.

Ive flown ducks in areas where there are ducks milling about in the sky in the locale, but with experience the tiercel learns that its best chance of a full crop is to work with you. It comes naturally to peregrines that seem to treat hunting with a bit more of an analytical mind than a hair trigger response. Thats why they wait on over gun lines or over quartering harriers.

Many of the comments against pigeon hawking come from people very much coming from a game hawking slant and how it could negatively affect that and thats fine, but if it is pigeons or nothing then give them a go, if you can make the calculations and come up with some slips, then have at it.

Why not, we've found a way to successfully fly most other bird species out there. The pigeon is the most natural of quarries for a peregrine. It's purely a falconer glass ceiling that is preventing us developing the flight, and of course local limitations in ground make up.

If I had enough places where I could get them to hold. Id give it a go for sure.
Just like any other quarry like ducks, or partridges, its not enough just to have numbers, but to have them in the right places.
They would be a super quarry, but for me, I just cant come up with the volume of slips needed to make a go of it.

It may go wrong with you falcon being a bit wild and wooly at first, or it could right and your tiercel could find a system of flying that birngs success, and that is as likely to involve waiting on over you as not.


Nick
There's much in there that occurs as sensible to me Nick, although I have also respect for the views and shared experience of others who appear resolute in advising against this practice. I find this tiercel particularly loyal for now, although I suspect he might change his patterns should he succeed in his attempts, at a pigeon far off, or after a tail chase. I would hope however that if he can be convinced that chasing is futile, but that stooping will be successful, and that the birds will be found most likely near I, then it may work. I am apprehensive however, on the basis of likelihood of spotting and stooping flushing birds that are way over yonder field, particularly likely perhaps with the heights he's going now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Perebrine View Post
Hi Johnny,
I asked a similar question ages ago & all the posts advised against it, most saying the Pigeons will lift as soon as they see the silhouette of the Falcon & it will eventually end with long track downs & a lost Falcon. It's a shame really with the numbers & I don't think anyone would refuse permission for such a Quarry.
Hi Johnny, thanks for this - I agree, it is a shame mate, and particularly for the reasons you mention and the potential quality of the flights!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardcore Hawker View Post
Good interesting thread Johny! And that's from someone with zero interest in flying longwings
Lol, must be good then Steve
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  #29  
Old 06-11-2013, 12:16 PM
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieT View Post

The problems already expressed on this thread are all there, but are they surmountable? You will have to be able to remove your gamehawking head completely. Re-a$ses your goals, tactics and field craft completely......
This is the crux I think Eddie - are these challenges insurmountable? Is this a foolish pipe dream? And yes, reassessment is required for sure!

My feelings are as well, that if he were to take one now - will I be able to overcome an innate sense and allow him to feed up on the breast? Would I be able to sell my soul, knowing as I let him feed that I have begun perhaps on a journey to disaster? I'm unsure if I can succumb, if I can dismiss these concerns! We shall see today what happens, the weather is perfect and he is winnowing as we speak!
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  #30  
Old 06-11-2013, 05:44 PM
Judd Casper Judd Casper is offline
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Default Re: Pigeon Hawking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johny View Post
This is the crux I think Eddie - are these challenges insurmountable? Is this a foolish pipe dream? And yes, reassessment is required for sure!

My feelings are as well, that if he were to take one now - will I be able to overcome an innate sense and allow him to feed up on the breast? Would I be able to sell my soul, knowing as I let him feed that I have begun perhaps on a journey to disaster? I'm unsure if I can succumb, if I can dismiss these concerns! We shall see today what happens, the weather is perfect and he is winnowing as we speak!
Johny your lucky in my mind he hasn't taken one yet and taken his fill. Success breeds success and the learning curve in killing woodpigeons is no different from that learnt in the killing of any other type of game. Another thing to worry about is pigeon shooters. I don't know what it is like in your neck of the woods but in mine its rife with them and is a constant worry for hawks that don't check at woodpigeons never mind those that do. My infamous tiercel in his last week with me killed five woodpigeons and two partridge, my control over the flight had all but gone he was flying and killing birds of his choice like a wild peregrine.


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