Falconry Displays

IMPORTANT NOTICE

AVIAN INFLUENZA – “BIRD FLU”

As of 6th December, 2016, and until further notice, we will not be flying any of our birds outdoors, nor attending any outdoor events while this situation persists.

This action is in response to the heightened risk of H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza, and the declaration from Defra that they have imposed Avian Influenza Prevention Zones covering the whole of England, Scotland and Wales.

Under the Defra declaration, keepers of poultry and other captive birds are required to keep their birds indoors and take appropriate biosecurity steps to keep them separate from wild birds and their droppings.

While some have interpreted this in other ways, we believe that it is best practice and common sense to do everything we can to avoid any risk associated with avian flu, and the spread of this highly contagious disease, which has now been found in wild birds, including peregrine falcons.

We have instigated enhanced bio-security around the whole of Honeybank, cleansing and disinfecting all clothing, footwear, equipment before and after contact with our birds.

We have also reduced the movement of people, vehicles and equipment to and from areas where our birds are kept and are keeping our vermin control project at its peak.

Vehicles are sprayed with an approved disinfectant before entering or leaving Honeybank.

Boot wash and sprays of fresh disinfectant at the correct concentration are positioned at entrances to Honeybank, and outside the mews and aviaries.

Our birds are being exercised inside an indoor ménage, with no possible contact with wild birds or their droppings.

All our hunting days and other outside activities are suspended until further notice, i.e. until Defra lift all restrictions.

Vouchers affected by our decision will be extended to take into account any delays imposed.

Please feel free to contact us for further details.

We apologise to everyone who is affected by our decision, but we believe it is the interests of our birds, wild birds, and the country as a whole, and we hope you will understand and agree with our decision.

For more information on the current Avian Influenza/Bird Flu outbreak, please visit https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-measures-to-protect-poultry-against-avian-flu

 

Falconry Displays

Introduction

Falconry, or hawking, is defined as the taking of live quarry using trained birds of prey, and was first recorded in China in 244 AD.  Throughout the centuries since, the sport has continued to elicit a feeling of tradition, excitement, splendour and pageantry.  Although today falconry is arguably as popular as it has ever been, it is still true to say that most members of the public know little about this ancient sport, and even fewer have had first-hand experience of what, to some of us, is a way of life.

While we certainly do not wish to encourage everyone to take up the sport, we understand the fascination that raptors (birds of prey and owls) hold for many people.  In today’s “green” society, many people realise that raptors are a barometer for conservation, and would dearly love to be able to get up close to real, living eagles, falcons, owls and other raptors.

We also understand the fascination with the historical aspects of this ancient tradition, and are extremely keen to ensure that these traditions are maintained, and passed on the next generation. During our demonstrations, we use traditional methods and language, explaining their meaning and origins to our audience.  These include the falconry origins of many everyday phrases, such as “fed up”, “boozer”, “cadge”, “apprentice” and many more.

In our displays, we simulate the sport of falconry, using live raptors in conjunction with inanimate dummies (lures), while still conveying the spirit, excitement and glory of this ancient sport, and  understanding and empathising with people’s sensibilities.  This enables guests to see the spectacle and get as close as humanly possible to a wide range of tame raptors, and also have the opportunity to have their questions answered by knowledgeable and professional enthusiasts.

Through our displays, visitors can see the way in which the modern falconer trains birds, and assure themselves of the well-being of all concerned.  At the same time, through experiential learning, visitors have the opportunity to see a wide range of well-behaved raptors, under strictly controlled conditions that will safeguard the health and safety of all concerned.

The Service

In our regular displays throughout the UK, we feature ferrets, hawks, eagles,  buzzards, falcons and owls.  If a client wishes, we can put on displays featuring just one or any combination of these animals.  Whichever service we supply, clients can rest assured that the displays – both static and active – will be presented in the most professional manner, and be entertaining, educational and strictly in step with the ethos of the organisation and the event.

A typical day may see a display featuring some of our owls, including the beautiful and highly endangered barn owl, and the largest species of owl on earth – the Eurasian eagle owl, with a wingspan of over 2 metres.  The next display may include our ferrets, hawking dogs and hawks all working together.  In another display, we may fly our eagle or one of our falcons, capable of flying at speeds of over 150 mph.  Whatever species we are flying, the methods used are all steeped in the rich traditions of the sport.

We give a thoroughly professional service, tailored to meet the demands of your organisation and its publics, reflecting the very best in entertainment, conservation, and education.  Our service is designed to give your customers the very best experience, with lots of audience participation where appropriate.

In addition to the flying, we can also stage a static display of the birds, along with an educational interpretative display, using display boards and professionally produced material.  Our static display is fully self-contained, with barriers, shelters, cages etc. for all the animals that we bring.  This display is manned, and staff are happy to chat to visitors and answer their questions.

You can rest assured that we will never do anything to put in danger visitors or the birds themselves.  All of the birds that we use are “bomb proof” having been bred and trained for the job.  Guests will delight in seeing the small owls fly, marvel at the size of the eagle owls, and be astounded at the speed of the falcons (which can reach speeds of over 150 mph).  All-in-all, we will give your guests an experience to remember.

We always give a highly personalised service, as we are small enough to care, while still being big enough to cope.  Due to the fact that we have such a large and varied collection of raptors at our disposal, we can always ensure that we have sufficient suitable individuals for all of our commitments.

All of our work is carried out in line with our own strict Code of Practice