Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What's Justin Up To??

He's out there . . . killing critters, with his trained hawk!  It was a bit of a slow start for him, due to the loss of Annabelle early in the season, but he got Goldie going, and as of today she has caught 7 squirrels, and a couple bunnies.  Like me, he is having a hard time finding bunnies, but Goldie is just as keen for squirrels . . . . and I think he prefers that.  She did take a bite today to her suborbital ridge (the bump over her eye).  He'll keep an eye on it to make sure it heals OK.  He also, FINALLY, sent me some pics, so here they are:
I think this may have been his first head of game, a cotton-tail rabbit.
Here is Goldie's most recent conquest . . . a 2.5 lb squirrel.  That's as big as she is!  Quite the catch!

Congratulations Justin!  You are doing great!

I flew both my girls today, but in different locations.  Sassy was flown later and on the property of one of Rich's old high school friends.  We've flown there several times but not caught any of the bunnies stirred up.  Today Sassy changed that stat, AND did so with Rich's friend watching.  Bunny #4 for her in the bag.  Sorry, I didn't turn bunny so as not to show the gore . . . but if gore bothered you, WHY are you reading my blog, eh?  It's quite possible I may put her up for the winter, not because I'm not getting good response, or weather, as it has continued to be mild, but she is molting!  Some time shortly after her coming to me she dropped one of her deck feathers, which I never found.  I just noticed she was missing the feather.  Well, she has a blood quill coming in right now, and I'd not like for her to break that.  She's also losing downy feathers.  I might have to go ahead and do a reverse-molt on her.  I'm not sure what has stimulated this start to molt.  She's on natural lighting, and tomorrow is the Solstice, although I have been keeping her cozy, at 50 degrees or so.  Not exactly summer weather!

Hit Girl was flown earlier in the day, and we got permission to fly in a new area, which I will have to explore again at a later date.  She did engage a couple squirrels early on, but after that encounter we didn't see anything else.  Near the end of our flight time with her we also were getting screamed at by what was probably local hawks.  The territory may be owned, so the squirrels there may be pressured already by hawks, and thus are good at avoiding them.  We called it quits as she has sustained a wound on her foot in her mews, somehow, and flying today broke it open again.  She even seems to have been favoring it.  I took her home and soaked her feet, then let her dry, and applied a topical poultice.  She will probably get soaked again tomorrow, and receive the same treatment.  It looks like the girls will not be doing any flying for a few days, due to my plans to get together with my girlfriend for some shopping, and then my work weekend.  Maybe we'll get out for a few hours Christmas Day.  I get that day off!

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