No discussion about falconry would be well put without an homage to what might be considered the staple of traditional falconry, the Peregrine. A bird from the longwing family with a stable demeanor and a desire to impress is a wonderful asset to a falconry that can provide the appropriate slips. Although the larger long wings are harder to provide the “golden” setup, the visual presentation provided by a falcon waiting on (proceeding to a desired pitch (read as height) and then waiting for the quarry to be flushed) when the quarry shows itself can be a sight that will be ingrained in your memory forever.
Peregrine falcons are flown in nearly every iteration of “age types”. From imprints, chambered, hacked, or passage and combinations thereof, falconers have found ways to adapt to the various personality differences between the types of upbringings. Many falconers seem to prefer the chambered, and when available the hacked bird.
Adjacent is my chamber Peales/Anatum Tiercel Peregrine, Evo in his first year feather.
There are a lot of different quarry that a peregrine can be a good fit to pursue. Traditionally waterfowl, such as ducks and upland game such as prairie chicken and grouse were the common quarry. In todays falconry many falconers have added other targets such as woodcock, pigeon, starling, and in some rare cases goose to the quarry list. The peregrine subspecies have a large range in size, with some of the bigger subspecies females getting well over 1100-1200g. The Tiercel in the photos on this page came out of the chamber at 600g, and was flown his first season at 575-595g.
To the left is the above bird, Evo, in his second year feather showing the drastic change from brown to a blue/grey sheen with a solid salmon breast and a change is barring patterns.