Are you considering taking the plunge and becoming a falconer?
The first thing to realize is that it’s not a quick process. It will likely take you a year to get your permit and your first bird. The first step is to find a falconer near you and go out hunting with them. Falconry is a hunting sport that does require a fair amount of time. It isn’t for everyone.
We are contacted frequently by people “looking for a sponsor”, the sponsor apprentice relationship is no different than any other. You’ll need to get to know someone and go out hunting with them a few times before someone is going to agree to sponsor. You’ll also want to meet a few potential sponsors to find someone you like and you want to learn the sport from. Once again, this is not a quick process.
There are many steps to becoming a falconer, but the main steps are:
- Find a falconer near you to go meet and see if the sport is for you.
- Passing a 100 question exam on raptor identification, training, health as well as laws pertaining to falconry.
- Building the housing for your bird.
- Acquiring various pieces of equipment (glove, leash, perch, etc.) and having that equipment pass inspection.
- Finding a sponsor. To become a falconer you have to apprentice under someone for two years.
This is just a short list of what you’ll need to get done.
There is a wealth of information on becoming a falconer on the Modern Apprentice website.
There is an online forum specifically for Apprentices. http://apfalconry.proboards.com/
A great place to learn more about falconry and to find falconers near you is at www.NAFEX.net, this is a large online forum with falconers from all around the country.
Contact the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission and request an information packet on falconry. This will come with a set of current regulations and an application for a permit. 850-488-4676