Glossary of falconry terms

Here is a short glossary to reference commonly used falconry vernacular.

Accipiter - Genus of raptor, the "short-winged hawks," i.e. Goshawks.

Austringer - One who hunts with accipiters.

Bal-chatri - A cage like trap with live bait and monofilament nooses that catch the raptor by the feet.

Bate - An attempt to fly from the fist or perch when secured.

Bind - To grab quarry and hold it.

Brancher - A young hawk that is mostly feathered but not yet fully capable of flight.

Buteo - Genus of raptor, the"broad-winged hawks," i.e. the Redtail hawk.

Cadge - A portable hawk perch capable of holding several birds.

Cast - The regurgitation of indigestible fur and bones, a normal daily act; or two raptors flown together; or to physically hold a raptor to prevent movement.

Creance - Long training cord or leash.

Crop - Vascular sac were food is first digested.

Enter - When a trained raptor first captures a type of quarry.

Eyas - A raptor taken from nest before fledgling.

Eyrie - A raptor nest site.

Feak - When the bird cleans his beak.

Hack - Leaving a bird free for a time to develop flying skills.

Haggard - A raptor that was over 1 year old when it was taken from the wild, or a wild raptor that is over one year old.

Imping - A method of repairing broken feathers.

Imprint - The psychological pairing of an infant to it's perceived parent.

Intermewed - A raptor that has moulted in captivity.

Jesses - Leather straps to secure the bird by the legs.

Manning - The process of taming a raptor.

Mantle - To hide food from onlookers by covering with wings.

Mews - Housing for raptors.

N.A.F.A. - North American Falconers' Association, established in 1961.

Passager - A raptor that was taken from the wild in the fall of its first year, or a wild raptor that has not yet molted into its adult plumage.

Penned-Hard - Fully grown feathers.

Pitch - Height a falcon takes overhead usually expressed in feet.

Preen - Straightening feathers with the beak - grooming.

Rouse - Shaking feathers out as a grooming action.

Slip - To release the raptor after quarry.

Stoop - Rapid decent from altitude, usually in pursuit of quarry.

Telemetry - Electronic gear for tracking lost raptors.

Tiercel - Male raptor.

Tiring - Tough piece of meat to pull and eat tediously.

Weather - To put a bird outside to enjoy the weather; secured.

Wait-on - The falcon maintaining pitch over the falconer.

Warble - An overhead wing stretch.

Yarak - State of mind in accipiters and hawks eager to hunt.


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