Have you ever seen a video of a person hunting with a large bird of prey and thought about how you could do the same thing? Hunting with large birds such as hawks, falcons, and eagles is one of the oldest forms of hunting and stretches back thousands of years. Today, these birds can still be taught to hunt in conjunction with a person for a small game and it is a very unique way of hunting that most have never experienced.
So how do you hunt with hawks and where is it legal? Let’s take a deeper dive into the world of falconry and how you can get your own start!
Training and Licensing
One of the most important things to consider is that you cannot just go out and expect to buy or tame a hawk without the proper training and prerequisites. In most areas, becoming a licensed falconer that can hunt with birds like hawks have to go through several years of apprenticeship and many exams before they can go off on their own.
This is due to the protected nature of the birds, as well as the fact that they are very hard to train. In fact, most veteran falconers will say that the birds are never actually tame, and simply learn to stick around for the food. Because of the difficulty and precious nature of the resource, there are a lot of different hoops to jump through if you want to hunt with a hawk of your own.
Luckily, there are different schools and training programs that can help new falconers get their start. In fact, one of the biggest requirements is to be trained by experienced falconers that have been in your shoes before!
What to Hunt with a Hawk
So if you complete all the training, pass the exams, and are legally able to hunt with a hawk, what could you hunt with it anyway? Birds of prey regardless of they are falcon, hawk, eagle, or owl, are primarily used to hunt small game such as rabbits. They can also be used to hunt other birds such as pheasants and waterfowl. The type of prey you intend to hunt largely depends on the species of bird you own, as they all have their own special abilities and shortcomings.
Hunting with hawks is no easy task, and the road ahead is full of challenges and difficulties if it is something that you truly want to accomplish. Still, if you go through the proper avenues it is a perfectly legal and fun way to connect with nature!
Check out this article for hunting with eagles and falcons:
Directions to Hunt with Eagles and Falcons
For more great ideas on how to fish and hunt from the experts, check out the awesome articles on our Bradley Smoker Hunting & Fishing Blog for more great tips & tricks.