Monday, August 08, 2011

Quaintessentially English

Falconry - (Fal-con-ry) -1. Hunting of game with falcons, 2. The art of training falcons for hunting

It is alive and well in England and it is absolutly facinating! Falconry was probably first introduced to Europe around AD 400, so I think it is fair to say that it has been a part of British culture for a very long time! Although it is not as widely practiced as it once was, it is a skill that is still practiced and infact employed by the Woodlands Trust. This is a 'green' way to control pests such as the Grey Squirrel (not indidginous to England), a species which is threating the existance of the native Red Squirrel.

We took a trip in July to the Staply Water Gardens in Cheshire to visit this falconry. Sadly it has since moved as the land has been bought up by a large company for development. The girls absolutly loved this visit - their favourite field trip this year. The handler was so accomodating and his talk was interactive and informative. We learnd things about these birds that we had no idea about before. As we went mid-week, we were the only visitors this day, so the girls had ample opportunites to be a landing post for these birds and the undivided attention of the handler.

To top off a fantastic visit - the weather was warm and sunny. A lovely English summers day!


  1. That is amazing! What a great field trip for your girls. I have always been interested in falconry but I don't think it is as common over here. Interesting info about the squirrels too. Very sad that this place is going to be developed. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. Hi Serena,

    It really is a most facinating thing to watch! Indeed it is sad about the develping - it makes it less accessable to the public.


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