The houbara bustard (Chlamydotis undulata) is a turkey-like bird found in sandy and stony desert-like regions. The bustard is a favored prey of the falcon, though it has a strong defense against its predator: the forceful excretion of a dark green anal slime. The bustard's meat is prized as an aphrodisiac (or possibly a diuretic) by falconers, and its mating display is flamboyant, though slightly disorienting. [more inside]
Parahawking in Nepal: beautiful footage of paragliders working with raptors to find thermals. [more inside]
Hawkman of the Himalayas. British falconer Scott Mason and friends have combined paragliding and falconry into the art of parahawking. [Via]
How do you convince a raptor to exercise? One way is to send up a kite with bait (a chunk of meat) attached. This is a relatively new strategy (~30 years) in the millenia-old tradition of falconry.
The sport and hobby of Falconry, or hunting small game with raptors has been around since ~600 bce. What you might not have known is that there is a small industry to provide your hawk or falcon with a jaunty chapeau, often necessary to keep the bird calm. More here, here, and here. And then there's the crazy. All you need... is five-hundred geepee...