Monday, March 4, 2013

Angry Bird . . . Not So Angry

On the final day of the 2012-2013 winter small game hunting season Justin and I got out for a bit of bird flying.  His hawk for the season, Angry Bird (named by his children), is not such an angry bird after all.  In fact, Justin says she is calm and sweet.  Below he's scratching her chest, and she has all the appearance of a bird that is enjoying it.  My RT, Hit Girl, would not tolerate this kind of attention.  Justin is not sure yet if he will let Angry Bird go, or perhaps keep her for a little longer.  She had a really good season, bringing lots of squirrels and a few rabbits, as well as some miscellaneous items to the bag.  On this day she didn't fly with us, as Justin and his family had been away on a family trip, and the person looking after her made sure she was kept in a very un-hungry state . . . . so she was just way too overweight to hunt.  I had failed to get her picture earlier in the year, so this is making up for that oversite.  She ranges on the slightly darker side of normal, and is a lovely girl.
He will finish up his apprenticeship this year, and I have absolutely no objections to advancing him to General Level Falconer.  He has done a very good job of caring for, training and hunting the birds under his care, not because of anything I have done, but because of his enthusiastic nature and drive to succeed.  He will be a fantastic falconer . . . and I look forward to seeing what he can do in the years to come.
After picture taking at his place, we went searching for some brushy places to fly my girls.  Sassy went first, and we chased around several bunnies in two different locations, before finally pushing out one from a huge brush pile.  Why in the world the bunny broke from such good cover, I don't know, but its lack of sense became my advantage.  By the time the bunny below was caught, Justin had to get on with some responsibilities of his own, so we parted ways, and went someplace to fly Hit Girl.  By the time we had her out, all the squirrels had gone home for the afternoon, so no last of the season catches for her.

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