|2nd September 2019, 08:29||#31|
Join Date: Jan 2010
Thanked: 154 Times
A falcon on the flight
Recently on my way back to Riyadh, I had the privilege of having a falcon as my co passenger. It was a five year old Gyr-Shaheen mix and had an attendant to take care of it. The attendant mentioned that the falcon had come from the Czech republic originally.
Its quite common in the middle east to see falcons as pets and I had previously held several for a couple of minutes for photo ops. But those are generally rushed affairs with one holding the falcon and posing for the photograph.
This was the first time that I could actually sit next to one for a couple of hours and see it ruffling and preening its feathers. The attendant would spray some water into the falcon's mouth once in a while. It remained hooded for the entire duration of the flight though the attendant loosened the hood once the flight was airborne.
The interesting thing was that as the plane was taking off, the bird sensed the change in air pressure and started to spread its wings and fluttered them awhile before settling down. Other than that it was fine through the flight, hooting once in a while. The attendant would stroke the plumage and its feet to calm it down.
I felt really privileged to see the bird so up close. An amazing experience.
Here are some pictures from the experience.