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Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015 
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Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 1:12 am
Posts: 380
Post Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Ruth has had a slow start this year. Been real busy trying to balance falconry with kids, work, kid's team sports, etc., etc.... anyway. Ruth had a minor setback at our last meet with a mild case of sour crop. Thanks to some tips from some experienced members i got her back out in the field this Sunday, and got a bunny. I hope to have her out again regularly to keep her in good hunting shape.

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Tue Dec 16, 2014 10:13 pm
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Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2010 8:28 pm
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Sorry I missed the meet van was down :( . Glad you got Ruth fixed up. I hope I get to hunt with you and Ruth this season :D . Take care my bro. STAY STRONG 8-)

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Wed Dec 17, 2014 6:50 am
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Thanks....

Ruth is the first bird passage bird i ever intermewed. I've had plenty of passage birds in the past.. there is a usual pattern in birds development... the not so successful ones tend to do a lot of grabbing from behind loosing bunnies that make it to cover, over the course of the season the best flight weight is established and the bird learns that a good vertical approach results in a full crop.... In my area there is tons of very thick cover with very little open spaces in between, tail chases are usually fruitless efforts.... by the end of a season most passage birds I've flown get it, they select their stoop and strike fast and hard at the perfect time, usually there is only one, maybe two chances at best to catch a bunny.

By the end of last season Ruth was showing off her vertical stoops showing me and nephews, inlaws and such how pretty she looked even when she missed. Ruth for whatever reason has decided to abandon the stoop and go back to the tail chase, resorting to go low and from behind to try to fly prey down, she has stopped stooping hard and crashing, choosing instead to go for the "but grab" by flying them down. I've lowered her weight to see if it will motivate her, but I'm being very cautions on how fast I bring her weight down.

This past Sunday she tail chased four bunnies, coming close once... Finally on her last bunny, just as we headed back to the van, she timed her dive perfectly and sat on a bunny that ran right under her perch. The kids and I were about 100 feet away, even with the roar of the Sunday Morning, North Avenue traffic we could hear the sound of the clean, squealess thud as both trajectories met in an almost perfect 90 degree "T-bone" strike... Maybe this was Ruth's way of finally remembering that tail chases are no good and the vertical stoop is the only way to a fresh hot meal.

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Wed Dec 17, 2014 10:57 pm
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
AWESOME Ruth AWESOME :!: 8-)

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Thu Dec 18, 2014 6:36 am
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Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:44 pm
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Location: Washington, IL
Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Carlos,
Nice post! It's really nice to once again hear about Ruth's progress and your hunts together. Keep the posts coming & the best to you and your family over the holidays. Take care...........Todd


Thu Dec 18, 2014 9:05 am
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Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 1:12 am
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
So today, i took her out again... she must have read my post!.. how do I know?.. reason number one... I ragged about her lack luster performance... she did not like that... when I went to get her out of the mew she was waiting anxiously, so anxious that she jumped to the floor, grabbed my boot... then she shot up and grabbed my hand (no glove hand) :oops: .... :lol: :shock:... she sank her halux into the back of my hand, you know the part where there is nothing but skin and bone.. well, I felt the puncture, (it doesn't look good right now).... her kill toe also sank in fairly deep into my palm... I was confused.... no way she lost that much weight over night... I put her on the scale, nope... she was still about a half ounce over... :?: :?: :?: ... ok.. well... she must have drank water??,... so off to the field we go... We get to the field and as soon as I get her out of the van she shoots up to a 50 foot power pole... I'm thinking, "this is gonna be good"... off I go into the brush... thick stuff, so thick I can't see if she's following, can't hear bells, I come out and she's not following... not one bit... so, just as I reach into the bag for a tidbit, she sees my hand move and she takes off in my direction.. I look into my bag to pick out a small piece... and next thing i know.. SMACK!!! :oops: she's on my back!!.. no pain this time, she just landed real hard!!.. I offer the tidbit, and hops to my glove, takes it and takes off, back to another high, almost perfect perch... off I go back into the brush.. bunnies start poppin' out left and right!!! (3 bunnies in one hr= "left and right" around here :lol: :lol: ).. What does Ruth do?.. on her first attempt.... a perfect vertical stoop, just what I was hoping for (she read my post and decided to try).. she took off from her perch, almost gaining altitude as she gained ground on the bunny.. she got directly over the path of the bunny, circled round tight right over it, and did a beautiful tear drop cork screw power dive, slamming into the thin patch of brush about 50 feet in front. I run up, no sound, no struggle... I find Ruth sitting on a rail tie with one foot up and a real busted up cere. :( , she was all puffed up and did not look good, she was disorientated.. took her about 5 minutes to regroup.. in those 5 minutes I inadvertently flushed another bunny that she totally ignored... then she had two tail chases, "but grab" attempts... she must have still been in pain from the dive..Could she have learned that slams hurt and don't usually end in a hot meal???, or perhaps are just not worth the try? After that I just walked back to the van and called it a night.. I do recognize she was a half ounce high.. but she also really wanted my fist... or is she just getting fist bound and spoiled?

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Thu Dec 18, 2014 10:58 pm
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
WOW :!: :evil: :twisted: HOPE SHE IS OK :D

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Fri Dec 19, 2014 6:22 am
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Took Ruth out Saturday afternoon. 1 rabbit flush= 1 rabbit in the bag..... for a bird and a falconer that can't seam to get it together this season, this is all that matters right now.

I took Ruth out at 1290g, again, wasn't planning on it but she was really acting like she wanted to hunt, hot footed, bating towards me at first sight... last time I took her out at this weight she had one very good dive resulting in a very beat up cere. We walked around for over 1 hour before was saw our bunny, in that hour Ruth went from following poorly in the beginning to following closely and watching me intensely in the end (the sun was setting fast). During our hunt we saw a few voles, and she jumped at the chance and gobbled down to big, fat ones :P ... yum, yum, vitamins!!!... finally just as we headed back to the van she spotted a bunny I flushed out of some 8 foot tall cat tails... the bunny ran out across an open field, Ruth closed the gap quickly, instead of slamming into it, she flew past it :? :?: ... making the bunny stop and duck into light cover... Ruth got a high perch right above the area where we last saw the bunny..she was on point.. I was still a good 30-40 yards back... I stopped for a moment to see what position I could best flush from... two seconds later the bunny tried to gun it and Ruth got it. wasn't perfect, wasn't pretty but we'll take it. The bunny was small. I won't be flying this field for a while. way too many resident redtails... too many fights for Ruth.

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Tue Dec 23, 2014 8:39 pm
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Congrats to Ruth and her Falconer Carlos , 2 voles and a rabbit kill sounds good to me :D :P 8-)

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Wed Dec 24, 2014 7:46 am
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Post Re: Ruth the Red Tail 2014-2015
Update on Ruth:.. been real busy with work and kids... I've been out a few times with her with little luck... she's been chasing hard, crashing hard but hasn't seen enough bunnies in one day to tag one.. Bunny numbers are low, usual days are 1 to 2 hours of walking with 1 to 4 bunnies max..... seams as though most of the fields I used to go to are now occupied by resident RT's... Got her out today with the whole family, and two of my kid's friends (their first time hawking).. we walked a field I haven't been this year, and only twice last year... used to have tons of bunnies, now has tons of RT's... we walked for about 30 minutes before Ruth saw one... when it flushed Ruth bounced from her position, against the wind she go right over it, circled once at about 50 feet up, and tear dropped, half way down she made a few adjustments, slammed hard and missed.... just as it happened, we got a visit from a very angry resident RT, that circled right over us screaming... Ruth was angry, but she kept it together, got into position for a re-flush, and off I went.. second flush took about 5 minutes of walking in a spot about 20x20 feet..Ruth was hard on point, and she was positive the bunny was in the area.. I kept walking, back and forth until finally the bunny flushed.. it bolted towards a tight group of 10 foot tall saplings, Ruth again circled tight at about 50 feet as the bunny stopped and changed direction, Ruth again did a tight roll over tear drop maneuver, and slammed on the ground about 10 feet ahead of me.. I saw how the bunny dodged her reach through the thicket, but still, she managed to snatch it with one foot just as it tried to juke her way to freedom at the very last second... she secured it by the head, I came in for a smooth dispatch, and let all the kids watch as she fed her self up. It was a much needed afternoon of success.. all the kids had a great time, and we went out for burgers and fries after words... what a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon!! :D.. hope to take her down to the next meet.. maybe she will be in better form by then.

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Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:53 pm
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