I have forever it seems been interested, no, fascinated in wild life, as a child I would walk for miles over hill and dale, through the fields and woods loosing myself amongst the beauty and wonder of it all.
This childhood fascination I carry with me to this day.
We all have images from our past that have such a impression on our young minds, that it becomes impossible to forget.
I have such a image in my mind that I would like to share with you.
I am about seven years old and climbing through a Dutch barn full of bails of straw, it was a favourite place that I enjoyed visiting, usually during school dinner time.
The barn was but a ten minute walk or a brisk five minute run from my school.
On the day in question I had climbed to the very top of the straw cliff face and stood looking down at the barn floor covered in loose straw,
it felt like I had just climbed the Matterhorn.
I clawed my way across the top of the bails to the side of the barn where I could see a chink of light that shone through a gap created by two bails that had not been stacked correctly. I made the gap larger with my hand and could see my school and all the children playing in the playground.
Suddenly, as if from nowhere appeared before my unbelieving eyes a hovering female Kestrel Hawk, not 18 inches from my nose, she looked at me I blinked at her and she was gone.
I ran back to school just in time for lessons but could not concentrate on anything but what I had just been privileged to witness.
The Kestrel must have mistaken my hand for a mouse and came to investigate further.
That image I can see today just as clearly as the day I first saw it, I believe it was just that amazing meeting between myself and the feathered predator that lead to a life long love for the killers with the curved beaks.
Hawks, Falcons, Eagles and Owls, they became my favourite types of birds, my absolute favourite you will not be surprised to learn is the magnificent
This bird is the perfect flying machine and during a stoop can achieve speeds of over 200 miles a hour.
This bird is phenomenal its aquatic equivalent must be the great white shark, this bird is the great white of the clouds.
He moves through the air with long powerful wings, he shall rise so high among the clouds the human eye can not detect him, while he circles the sky’s searching for his quarry with eyes so keen and sharp.
Spotting his prey he shall begin his stoop with wings tightly closed cutting through the air like a bullet,
from out of the blue a great whooshing sound can be heard as this great bird almost defies the laws of nature by reaching these amazing speeds.
As he thunders earthwards totally zoomed in on his quarry and with a slight adjustment to his tail and wing feathers, “BANG” dinner is served.
You can safely assume from the above that I would have loved to become a falconer,
to once more see the Kestrel hovering but inches from my nose.
THE KESTREL IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE “WINDHOVER”
YOU CAN NOT TAME THESE BIRDS
THE ONLY REASON THEY COME BACK TO THE GLOVE
IS BECAUSE THEY ARE HUNGRY.
FLY A FALCON WITH A FULL STOMACHE AND YOU SHALL