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FredFogg
03-28-2009, 09:50 PM
Has anyone ever taken an eyas accipiter, but didn't imprint it? What I mean by this, is not do the whole recipe thing. Just feed it until it can eat on its own and then free loft it and toss food to it through the food chute and then after it has hard penned, pull it and train it like a passage? What are folks thoughts on this and what problems do you think might arise?

frootdog
03-28-2009, 10:04 PM
Has anyone ever taken an eyas accipiter, but didn't imprint it? What I mean by this, is not do the whole recipe thing. Just feed it until it can eat on its own and then free loft it and toss food to it through the food chute and then after it has hard penned, pull it and train it like a passage? What are folks thoughts on this and what problems do you think might arise?

Have you read A Hawk for the Bush by Mavrogordato? It covers this very thing.

FredFogg
03-28-2009, 10:11 PM
Have you read A Hawk for the Bush by Mavrogordato? It covers this very thing.

No, I haven't read it yet! Have it, just haven't had time to read it. I will check it out. Thanks!

Saluqi
03-29-2009, 01:35 PM
Has anyone ever taken an eyas accipiter, but didn't imprint it? What I mean by this, is not do the whole recipe thing. Just feed it until it can eat on its own and then free loft it and toss food to it through the food chute and then after it has hard penned, pull it and train it like a passage? What are folks thoughts on this and what problems do you think might arise?

I think it's probably a recipe, no pun intended, for disaster. With no human or parent/sibling interaction I betting for a serious nut job. Otherwise folks would do it that way all the time, it's way easier than any imprinting method out there.

Jack
04-12-2011, 08:48 PM
Since you would not be trying to socialize the young hawk, it would not matter that you take it old enough to feed itself. You could place it on a nest platform in the mews with something soft under it in case it falls off, and a ladder like used in a hen house for it to regain the platform. A food drop chute would keep you completely out of the picture. Once the hawk was close to hard pinned, you could enter at night and take it up for training. This was done in the old days by those that were fearful of hacking them wild. The solitude will not cause them mental injury as they tend to be solitary and anti social to begin with. As long as they have food and can see out a window they would not concern themselves with much else. We are only talking about a few weeks.
From the time they become self aware they are only concerned with personal survival. They have no concept of parent or sibling. It is also my opinion that our personal interaction with these hawks is what creates the screaming and mantling of most eyass hawks.

mainefalconer
04-12-2011, 09:14 PM
Fred,

I've got no time at the moment, so I'll comment at length later on. Just wanted to chime in quickly so that I could find this thread again. I've done it with one gos, and one merlin and had mixed results. Details later...

RyanVZ
04-12-2011, 09:56 PM
I didnt really do that with my current Coop, but I did something similar. I imprinted her last year (always had food never saw me bring it). Tame hacked her for a week, but she was bothering people, always trying to land on or near them, so that got stopped earlier than I would have liked. I dropped her weight a bit and trained her to the lure. Then put her in a mew, free lofted, and put live starlings,quail, and sparrows in the chute for the entire winter when I was flying my falcons, ya know, real falconry. toungeout

Anyhow, pulled her back out at the end of February, dropped her weight (slowly; she started out catching at 100g heavier than when I put her up for the winter) and went hawking. Up to nearly 100 head now and still having good behavior. I dont even need a tail saver with her anymore she just lightly touches the tips to the ground when mantling, although she does have a few Harris feathers now but those were broken in the mew just a couple of weeks before pulling her frus). She is trained to trade off kills to the lure, then jump to the fist for a tidbit. Only other little thing I did different is I only call her to an open flat hand with the tidbit behind my thumb. My thinking was/is that they can mistake the glove for prey if they are pulling meat out of the fist and that is where some of the sticky footedness comes from. So far few problems with that either. Most often I can catch, trade, jump to glove, go 30 feet and get another slip, catch, trade, jump, and so on. I do call her to the glove after a miss sometimes to the open hand with the tidbit sitting there. This is the first accipiter I've messed with and I just went in looking to correct problems before they even showed up. I've also split flying duties with a buddy of mine and she does well for him as well. So far so good. Quiet bird and no excess aggression unless you're black and covered in feathers. Knock on wood.

I am 100% an accipiter neophyte, maybe its just luck ;)

mainefalconer
04-13-2011, 08:09 AM
when I was flying my falcons, ya know, real falconry. toungeout


Apparently, spell check didn't catch Ryan's error. He didn't mean "real" he meant "easy." Just thought I'd clear that up. :D

Okay, so here's the nutshell version of the 2 times I've attempted pulling chicks without imprinting them;

In the mid-nineties, I climbed a tree here in Maine and pulled a 26 day old female gos from her nest. At that time, I had two very close hawking buddies, and we all trained our birds together and helped one another quite a bit. We decided that she was too old to be raised and treated as a full-blown imprint, so I stuck her in a chamber that I had that allowed no view of people, or anything other than a stream and some woods. We watched her through a one-way mirror, and fed her through a food chute, and after she was hard-penned, we pulled her from the chamber, seeled her, and waked her for 2 or 3 days, and progressed through training her normally, as though she was a passage gos. She did great! My buddy Pete flew her on ducks for a few seasons and eventually started having big behavioral problems with her, so he transferred her to me for a change of routine, and she really pulled herself together. I hawked her on woodcock and squirrels for a few years and really enjoyed her, but noticed that all of her behaviors were totally in line with what you would expect from an imprint. Every falconer who ever met her assumed that she was an imprint, and I passed her on to Jimmy G in Rhode Island. He flew her for a year or two and then donated her to a breeding project. She was definitely an interesting bird. We thought we'd done everything we could to avoid imprinting, but over time, discovered that she displayed pretty much all of the bad behaviors that you would expect from a poorly trained imprint. I really enjoyed her, and she hunted well, but she was very dangerous to handle.

Most recently, I pulled a pair of merlins from the same nest at 16 days of age, and a friend raised them together in a chamber that he has. Food chute, etc.. After they were hard-penned, we pulled them out, seeled them, (to make hood training a smooth process) and trained them as you would train any chamber-raised longwing. Both birds worked out great. My female is a lovely little bird. Still hoods well, flies strong, very reliable (I've never had to pull out the receiver) kills game, handles nicely with good manners, etc.. I would definitely do it again. Actually, the experience has me thinking that from now on, instead of pulling eyass birds from the nest, I would prefer to let nature raise them, and then go in to the nest area and trap them once they've become branchers. It seems that you'd get the proverbial "best of both worlds" from this approach.

RyanVZ
04-13-2011, 08:22 AM
Apparently, spell check didn't catch Ryan's error. He didn't mean "real" he meant "easy." Just thought I'd clear that up. :D


lol.....I can't say that I disagree. A lot less walking anyhow, and no tidbits to get ready.....

mainefalconer
04-13-2011, 08:35 AM
I'm just joking Ryan. (though, as they say, "a lot of truth is said in jest") What fun would it be if we didn't have a shortwing vs. longwing rivalry? Even though I think it's easier to train good longwings, you guys definitely seem to do a lot more driving around looking for the perfect slip, and in THAT regard, what you guys do is certainly more difficult!

PHILADELPHIA CITY HAWKER
04-13-2011, 03:26 PM
Has anyone ever taken an eyas accipiter, but didn't imprint it? What I mean by this, is not do the whole recipe thing. Just feed it until it can eat on its own and then free loft it and toss food to it through the food chute and then after it has hard penned, pull it and train it like a passage? What are folks thoughts on this and what problems do you think might arise?

Fred,

Never did that, I hard imprinted my Female Gos and Sharpy, fed it by hand, used the old-timers method using old-timers logic (they really know where the food is comming from). Never experienced significant noise issues (you have to be delicate with the weight control for some time - very important). There are different noises that a gos makes and you have to learn the difference between screaming for food, calling and talking.

I sence from your question that you may be concerned about the noise factor. I would imagine that the method your proposing will cause screaming or habitual calling since the Gos needs that bonding. If it doesn't get that socializing, it will start calling out for the parent and when you drop the food into the shoot to quiet it you reinforce (reward) the calling issue. THIS IS JUST MY THEORY.

Jeff

Jack
04-13-2011, 05:40 PM
This is where I usually get into trouble. Things I say tend to contradict the opinions and theories of others and it seems to piss them off at me. But here goes.
These hawks are not human and so we cannot judge their behavior by what we feel or think. A goshawk does not scream for attention. It is a solitary creature for most of it's life, only coming together for breeding purposes. And that can end in tragedy. You need not socialize a hawk as such, as long as you remain familiar. You can feed a young hawk by hand until it can feed itself, and then just leave food for it to eat at will. I would suggest you never allow it to become hungry. And I would recommend you not drop it's weight until it is hard pinned, and then drop it as quickly as you possibly can. The purpose behind this is to get the hawks weight down so that you can start feeding it again and get on with the training. If you take your time and slowly drop the weight, the hawk never gets enough to eat and stays hungry most of the time. If you feed it up again now and then, you gain some weight and lose some of the headway you might have made. The constant hunger will lead to the hawk obsessing on you as provider and begin screaming. There are other things that we do that can cause screaming. Picking up and handling a young eyass is a traumatic experience, and they will associate the feeling of anxiety to you from then on. Taking them out to play on the lawn is another trauma. They might not show it, but being on the ground has got to be kiss of death for a baby hawk. They have this solid fear of falling, and this is what keeps them from playing around and falling from the nest. I have known people to give live baggies to an eyas so it can kill it, thinking it requires this to make a killing machine of it. This will also cause high anxiety. You don't need to do that, as they will end up knowing what to do anyway. The very best way to do an imprint is to let it have the run of a room until it hard pins and then mew it. Cutting the weight as it becomes more aloof. If you don't want to imprint it, just place it in the mews on a nest platform and feed it there.

goshawks00
04-13-2011, 06:48 PM
Lots of bs , and theories... There is nothing new at all being done.... Fred look back a couple of years ago, Isaac Gale did a coop just the way you ask about.
BTW one time does not make for solid evidence.

PHILADELPHIA CITY HAWKER
04-13-2011, 07:06 PM
This is where I usually get into trouble. Things I say tend to contradict the opinions and theories of others and it seems to piss them off at me.

Jack,

This forum is to express your opinion and what works for you. To each its own. I agree with the weight issues that you address and not to leave the bird hungry. But I don't think there is only one way to raise the imprint. Hand feeding can be a dangerious proposition for one that is not confident in what their doing and not knowing when to feed the hawk. The only reason why I do it was from a long discussion from well know breeder and falconer who converted me into a believer. There is still to this day controvery whether the so called recipe method is the only method to raise a falcon or accipiter. I've tried both methods with the same results (I'm a risk taker and will continue to hand feed my next falcon/accipiter).

However, The purpose on a captive raised imprint, is to develop a bond. And despite you saying a Gos is solitary in nature has not been the case with me. My Gos greeted me is almost a mating posture when I walked into the mews. I think that it is extreemly dangerous not to socialize the bird when your raising it. Leaving it in the mews without contact defeats the purpose. You will wind up a bird that will not be calm in your presence and possibly have vocal communication issues. So whats the point in getting an imprint and putting it into solitary confinement. Your better off with a chamber or passage accipiter.

Jeff

FredFogg
04-14-2011, 02:48 PM
Guys, I appreciate the responses but it was back in 2009 that I asked this. toungeout :D LOL

But it is a good topic to discuss and I am sure others might want to know the same question.

PHILADELPHIA CITY HAWKER
04-14-2011, 03:43 PM
Guys, I appreciate the responses but it was back in 2009 that I asked this. toungeout :D LOL

But it is a good topic to discuss and I am sure others might want to know the same question.


Fred,

So what did you do and how did it turn out?

Jeff

FredFogg
04-14-2011, 04:00 PM
Fred,

So what did you do and how did it turn out?

Jeff

I didn't pull one that year and never tried anything. So it really never turned out. LOL I am a couple more years falconry wiser, so I think I have a plan on the next one I pull.

goshawkr
04-14-2011, 05:18 PM
However, The purpose on a captive raised imprint, is to develop a bond. And despite you saying a Gos is solitary in nature has not been the case with me. My Gos greeted me is almost a mating posture when I walked into the mews. I think that it is extreemly dangerous not to socialize the bird when your raising it. Leaving it in the mews without contact defeats the purpose. You will wind up a bird that will not be calm in your presence and possibly have vocal communication issues. So whats the point in getting an imprint and putting it into solitary confinement. Your better off with a chamber or passage accipiter.

Jeff,

Excellent comments.

I really wanted to whup on what Jack said, but you gave me a great starting point to do this.

Its very tempting for me to call Jack’s statements a misunderstanding, but that would not be accurate. He understands accipiters, very well. He has been working with them a long time. McDermitt too. And I could of course add other names to that list.

But the mental model that Jack is presenting is incomplete. Same goes for the often quoted model used in the recipie.

Jack, and many others describe accipiters as being “solitary” or “non-social” animals. This is coming from a bianary mental model used to describe the social lives of animals, where one group does not prominently engage in social interactions, and another group does. This mental model is not inaccurate, but it IS very limiting, and leads one to have an incomplete understanding of the behaviors one sees.

I fell into the same trap myself, and only gradually and even reluctantly came to a more complete understanding. I remember a time when I was raising my first goshawk, who spent a lot of time with my daughter who was about 2 at the time. I was sitting in the shade in my back yard with a couple old time falconers and my ~40 day old goshawk on a summer afternoon when my daughter got up from a nap and came out to see “her” bird. My goshawk reacted with excitement as soon as my daughter came into view, and my falconer pals were really surprised by that.

Over the next several years, I gradually noticed the evidence before my eyes. What I have come to understand is that its much more accurate to think of accipiters, and indeed all higher animals, as being social animals. Some animals are more social than others, but all are social to one degree or another. Rather than think in bianary terms (social OR Solitary), its more accurate to think in terms of a sliding scale between very social and less social. On one extreme of this scale are creatures like sheep which have a complete mental break down if they are alone for any period of time, and on the other are creatures like mantids that always eat each other.

Accipiters are certainly less social than most other animals we are in contact with. I’d even go so far as to say they are the least social raptors. But they still are social animals, with social urges and instincts to interact with others of their kind. Accipiters don’t need companionship on the terms that you or your dog do, but they do crave and even need it to some degree at some points of their lives, PARTICULARLY the entire time before and shortly after dispersal. After reading a number of scientific publications on goshawks I was quite surprised at just how social they really are.

And to get back to the point original raised a couple years ago… Raising an eyass in isolation is not going to yield predictable results. The young hawk will have strong urges for companionship and social interactions with its parents/siblings that will not be expressed, and will not run their course, and then those urges will be transferred onto the falconer when its taken up. How that eventually plays out will depend entirely on how skilled the falconer is at interacting with those behaviors and/or dumb luck. Scott’s description of the results from raising his goshawk in post #8 are EXACTLY what I would expect.

Chamber rearing – where the baby hawk is raised by another "parent" hawk – is something all together different. Crèche rearing is also something different because the hawk can socialize with "siblings".

Jack
04-14-2011, 05:58 PM
Jack,

This forum is to express your opinion and what works for you. To each its own. I agree with the weight issues that you address and not to leave the bird hungry. But I don't think there is only one way to raise the imprint. Hand feeding can be a dangerious proposition for one that is not confident in what their doing and not knowing when to feed the hawk. The only reason why I do it was from a long discussion from well know breeder and falconer who converted me into a believer. There is still to this day controvery whether the so called recipe method is the only method to raise a falcon or accipiter. I've tried both methods with the same results (I'm a risk taker and will continue to hand feed my next falcon/accipiter).

However, The purpose on a captive raised imprint, is to develop a bond. And despite you saying a Gos is solitary in nature has not been the case with me. My Gos greeted me is almost a mating posture when I walked into the mews. I think that it is extreemly dangerous not to socialize the bird when your raising it. Leaving it in the mews without contact defeats the purpose. You will wind up a bird that will not be calm in your presence and possibly have vocal communication issues. So whats the point in getting an imprint and putting it into solitary confinement. Your better off with a chamber or passage accipiter.

Jeff

I could be wrong, but I think the subject was about raising an eyas without imprinting it to start out with. And you can form a bond with the hawk as it grows, but it is likely to develop into an imprint. I managed to do that without hauling mine all over the place with me. You never see wild hawks hauling the young birds around like that.
The wild nature of any raptor is what can be called normal. Wild hawks tend to spend most of their lives alone in solitude. We alter them to some extent, but then there are sometimes things that we don't really appreciate about them too, once altered.

Jack
04-14-2011, 06:23 PM
The very best way to do an imprint is to let it have the run of a room until it hard pins and then mew it. Cutting the weight as it becomes more aloof. If you don't want to imprint it, just place it in the mews on a nest platform and feed it there.
__________________
Jack

Ok, let me add something to this last statement of that post. As the hawk had the run of the room, actually a couple of rooms, I also had the run of these rooms. One was my den, or man cave. TV, bed, computer, everything involving me. He had his little bed, toys, and lots of room to run around and play, and he occasionally climbed into my lap for a nap. Slept on my bed during the day as well. I can and went, he stayed until he was fully feathered and flying. He did not mount the fist until he was flying about the room. It was not until he was doing this branching that I actually took him outside on the fist and introduced him to water. So he got lots of socializing until he hard pinned. At this time he started the so called disbursal thing, which is simply explained. He actually stopped growing and his feathers stopped growing, which then left him nothing more than a fat sub adult hawk. I had to pull down the weight, and everyone said slowly, so I tried that. He started to become vocal at the sight of me, so I immediately mewed him to stay from his sight and quite feeding him for several days. The next time he seen me I had dropped food in the drop chute and as he ate I entered and took him up. No screaming, no mantling, no nasty behaviors.
When young hawks leave the nest, speaking of the coopers hawk here, they tend to move away from their siblings. They will scatter about a large area, avoiding contact with one another. They do not seem to develop that bond you speak of. They come only to the food call. Once they hard pin, they become fat young hawks and tend to lose interest completely. So, should one wish to raises an eyas yet not imprint it, there would be nothing wrong with placing this hawk alone in the mews and only let it see you on occasion. It would eat the food you drop, it would bath, it would preen, and it would sun and dust bath itself like a normal young hawk, only it would not be imprinted on you and would require manning just like a passage hawk. It was done so many times in the past almost exactly like that, and the idea was at the time not to imprint the hawk. There was few back then that had an interest in imprinted hawks.