makes 'em look like cool spacemen or ghengis khan or aliens or evel knievels...
January 11, 2007 1:15 PM   Subscribe

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...
posted by exlotuseater (12 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You also need a gray Van Dyke goatee, some black turtlenecks, and a steely-eyed stare.
posted by interrobang at 1:38 PM on January 11, 2007

Also, I would like to point out one of the greatest most funniest and bleak and fantastic films of all time: Kes by Brit director Ken Loach.

Kes is for Kestrel
posted by Skygazer at 1:42 PM on January 11, 2007

Aww. I couldn't find the video except on stupid NBC's commercial-laden website, but here is the script of...The Falconer!

While in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as a teenager, I was at a souk and was offered a falcon for the equivalent of around $180.

I was tempted, for a second.
posted by mckenney at 2:46 PM on January 11, 2007

Weird, I was just thinking about taking up Falconry yesterday. Of course I was also thinking about what I'd do if I won the lottery.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 2:58 PM on January 11, 2007

I've always wanted to get an owl, and I've been told that a fast track to getting the necessary permissions is to get into falconry. Apparently once you demonstrate the proper skills at caring for the bird, a lot of the barriers are eased up on.

I've never had the time or money to pursue the project, and my houseful of pets probably wouldn't make a good home to such a big bird, but I've always thought it would be a cool companion.

Ah well, maybe in a couple of decades, when I'm retired and have the necessary free time to dedicate to such an undertaking.
posted by quin at 3:38 PM on January 11, 2007

When I saw "jaunty chapeau" I instantly pictured a falcon in a little top hat. Sadly, that was not in the links.
posted by Alison at 4:33 PM on January 11, 2007

I'm sorry for misleading you. :(
posted by exlotuseater at 4:57 PM on January 11, 2007

Interesting post exlotuseater. What beautiful birds falcons are.

For a while in New Delhi I adopted a kite (a hawk-like type of vulture) that had been wounded in a storm and nursed it back to health until it could fly again. What an amazing, and huge, raptor that was. I was scared of it, while loving it. His name was Raja. Incredibly sharp talons I found out when I picked it up for the first time and a beak that could probably have snapped off my fingers as I hand fed him back to life and flight again. But he was a gentleman and seemed to understand I meant no harm and did me none. An elegant bird.

Those are wonderful falcon hoods. Arabian hoods. Mongolian hoods. There are also falcon blocks. Aside: the etymology of the English word, mews, comes from the mewing sound falcons make.
posted by nickyskye at 6:21 PM on January 11, 2007

The Atlanta Falcons have a real falcon (not Freddy Falcon, the mascot) that flies around the Georgia Dome before games. I assume that he is someone's pet.

I've watched faconry practice at the Falconry Academy in West Virginia.

The Burj Al Arab in Dubai uses falcons to keep pigeons away.
posted by Frank Grimes at 6:45 PM on January 11, 2007

I love watching the wild raptors that fly around my house. Some nights an owl perches on the peak of my neighbor's roof. In sillouette it looks amazingly like a large cat.

Nice thing about falcons is they catch rabbits. Rabbits are lovely with beer and date sauce, a Belgian speciality.
posted by Goofyy at 3:00 AM on January 12, 2007

Kes is f'ing brilliant (Dated trailer, YouTube).
Why is Metafilter reliving my childhood for me today?
"Don't know sir"
posted by aisforal at 3:23 PM on January 12, 2007

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