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Why is everyone accepting that falconry is nothing more than a harmless pastime. This is a blood sport such as bull baiting etc left over from our ancient past. Falconers get a kick watching their well fed birds inflict harm on other wildlife and base their masculinity on the prowess of their birds.
Wow. Maybe you should refrain from posting such comments since they make you look really, really, really uneducated.
Falconry is a blood sport, you are correct. It is the sport of "hunting" with a bird of prey. We train our birds to hunt "with" us, accepting us as their partners. They hunt in the wild to survive. They are hunters regardless of being in captivity or the wild. This is what THEY DO. We do not sick our birds onto helpless quarry. Most flights DO NOT end in a kill. We respect the quarry and the habitat that the quarry is found in. We tread lightly. We do LESS damage to wildlife and habitat then any of the other hunting methods, because all we take with us is a bird and sometimes a pointer. Nothing is more natural than a bird chasing it's natural quarry. Rabbits, waterfowl and upland birds are all chased by raptors daily. They know how to elude raptors and get really good at it. Someone trudging through with a shotgun and shooting at game is EXTREMELY more un-natural and violent than falconry.
Falconers are a more proactive group of conservationists than ANY birder group or photography group on the planet. We have given millions of dollars in state club and national club money to keep wild lands free, to save sage grouse, to build nesting platforms for sensitive species, to make the power companies build T design poles to keep raptors from getting electrocuted AND THE LIST GOES ON.
Instead of using rifles to hunt, or bows...spear guns....etc, we form a bond with a wild animal and then watch it as it does what it NATURALLY wants to do.
If you get a minute, go learn something factual before you post such foolish and emotional statements.