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Old Sep 21, 2015, 07:37 AM
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Only to note:

1. Raptor males, incl. Vultures/Buzzards, are approx. 40% smaller than females [females must be better able to get prey for their young].

2. Although the size of both male & female raptors, incl. Vultures/Buzzards, varies from region to region, for ex., high mtn. vs low flatland .... if one encounters a LARGE raptor of a given local species it is most likely a FEMALE, a "she"/"her"; a smaller one is a male, a "he"/"him". Raptors are generally full size one year after hatching ["birth"].

3. Bald Eagles prefer dead fish, which are on the surface and offer no resistance or threat [raptors have very strong digestive systems]: my Wildlife Officer friends told me they find stinking two-week old dead prey in Redtail Hawk nests.

4. Vultures/Buzzards WILL hunt & kill when hungry enough!


I was made to learn all of this and more from professionals before I got my first Redtail to raise ....
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Old Sep 21, 2015, 11:18 AM
bluefalconhollan is offline
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xlcrlee...what do you hunt with your redtail hawk?
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Old Sep 21, 2015, 03:25 PM
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Although my instruction came from falconers, I was training her to fly with my RC sailplanes, so we both hunted thermals. She lived on expensive steak and good old Tennessee roadkill ....

Until the past caught up with both of us:

The TN Wildlife Officers who got her from a filled nest way up a tree had asked the regional Federal Officer if they could get permission to take her. At the time there were far too many Bald Eagles and hawks being shot by rednecks who'd say "I thought it was a chicken or duck", etc. So the Feds sent in a hard-nosed ex-fighter pilot to combat them. He even put a cop in jail for shooting a Magpie that was disturbing locals in a supermarket. So when at some point he called me, it turned out that he meant that the State Wildlife Officers could get permission, but would have had to officially ask for it, which they hadn't. The outcome was that we all had to pay fines and he took Amelia and gave her to a friend who owned a wildlife zoo. THEN he said I could have permission to get another .... but after all that time, effort and LOVE, my heart was broken and I didn't continue (not that I didn't really enjoy playing vulture and scouring up roadkill for her .... [sarcasm intended]). At least she hadn't gotten shot, had enjoyed freedom for some time and presumably lived out her life quietly [all happened 40 years ago; their average lifespan is 21 years].

Back to the present: my Budgie Kiki and I were watching a docu about large eagles in Kazakhstan in which 100 of a mountain tribe's 300 cows were killed -- murdered, not eaten! -- by a pack of huge wolves so they went on a wolf hunt. These small folks were on small ponies carrying ca. 20 of their trained female eagles (they use them for 2 years, then band, release, and evt. do the same with one of their female offspring).

Kiki was obviously impressed watching 2 of these huge eagles on the hunt take down and mantle a giant wolf. The next day as I brought out a warm slice of Swiss spinach pie [Spinatwähe], Kiki swooped down on it, made the exact cry the eagles had and proceeded to mantle his pie! [see pic below of mantling, something NOT natural for small seed-eating Budgies!]

Of course he also eats meat [chicken and some beef], but he prefers seed, oat flakes, whole wheat bread, grass, clover leaves .... and the occasional vegie pizza. And devours fresh basilicum [I keep several plants for him to "swim in" and coat his feathers too]. Between us, that's about the only food-hunting we do nowadays.
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Old Sep 21, 2015, 03:28 PM
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""4. Vultures/Buzzards WILL hunt & kill when hungry enough!

Not too long ago;
https://video.search.yahoo.com/video...spart=avg&tt=b
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Old Sep 21, 2015, 03:35 PM
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Of course, that's their usual polite custom; those were eating dead meat and hadn't killed her: it's their official job to clean up. But the point 4. above is that they will actually chase down, attack and kill as well when necessary (I don't suppose they pushed her off the cliff).
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Old Sep 28, 2015, 12:27 PM
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re: Post #138 >

Kiki now has his own FaceLook page https://www.facebook.com/amazing.stu...t.kiki?fref=ts and a cool new 2 minute video with original music I "composed" on the spot as I played all the instruments (overdubs) into my Toshiba Ultrabook's mic: eBass, guitar, 5-str banjo played as Easy Listening Jazz as well as Bluegrass in the exciting parts .... plus bass drum which was a cardboard shipping carton and which sounds close to the bass drum on Early Beatles, Buddy Holly and even Diana Ross & the Supremes bass drum >

Amazing Stunt Pilot Kiki (2 min 1 sec)



please "LIKE" it on YouTube and FaceBook and send it around, telling everyone to do the same, spreading Kiki's joyous good vibes and brightening everyone's day ....


L
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Old Sep 29, 2015, 07:17 AM
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Damned falcons over here, they think they can eat my toy...

Home of rofalconry (3 min 12 sec)
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Old Oct 05, 2015, 02:58 AM
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re: https://www.facebook.com/amazing.stu...t.kiki?fref=ts (much better than the YouTube one, namely because of captured screenshot pics in the Photos section ...please "like" IF you do

Kiki flew to me as I was reviewing the video above [Post #141] : he heard the sounds and of course as he watched he said "Kiki" in clear recognition .... but when we came to the inverted Flying Carpet section he said, very loud and as an order: "STAY!". As in "hang on!".

If you look carefully at the pics and descriptions in the above-linked Facebook Photos section you can see him react to the first time he was actually inverted on the "carpet". He quickly, in a fraction of a second, found out to push the front of the "carpet" down away from him and thus UP away from the floor. Basically full inverted DOWN input to increase its AoA w.r.t. the ground. Check out the sequence in those pics and by jogging the video!

OK his brain goes maybe 10 - 20x so fast as ours, but there was no "trial & error" there .... he just did it!! I guess 85,000,000 years of hard-wiring has some benefits when it comes to instinctive understanding of flight.

L
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Old Oct 06, 2015, 10:03 AM
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I just remembered this "thermal" adventure with gulls here >

Quote:
Originally Posted by xlcrlee View Post
I have very often flown RC sailplanes and motor-sailers with soaring birds, but the most entertainment I had was on one calm and frosty-cold winter morning at a quiet athletic field in Züri/CH when I was testing an early pre-production version of my Airider RC toy motor glider. That sort-of canard biplane (front wings small, though) was white (pre-prdn.) but it had thin black molded sub-fins.

A group of gulls, awaiting the first thermal of the day, took off after it as they saw it slowly climb out, and thinking it was a fat white gull (they MUST have, as I'd never seen them get anywhere close to an RC plane before) with typical black wingtips (much fatter wings, though; the gulls were either not too particular or not too bright). Anyway, they circled with it, but were obviously continually surprised that had to keep flapping their wings to keep up with this super-gull, which obviously could ride the "thermal" much better than they. In fact, some were already in the air above the Airider, circling, and were also quite surprised to find the Airider cirlcling UP right through their midst. It was beautiful and very entertaining; I HAD to laugh!
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