Mary Rose (@mother_to_raptors) lives in Middlesbrough and is Head Bird Controller at North East Falconry.
Mary has worked with birds of prey her whole life and now provides bird control for numerous sites across the North East of England using her own team of 15 birds. From the age of 13, she volunteered, traveling the country and providing falconry displays, educational visits, and hawk experiences. She graduated with a degree in Journalism in the hope that she could use the media to raise awareness for conservation, before being offered a full-time job with North East Falconry.
Now she spends her spare time hunting her birds of prey, using A Clarke Falconry anklets and jesses and commits her life to train and care for birds of prey.
Q - What inspired you to start Falconry?
A - My grandad introduced me to falconry at a very young age, he bred a lot of birds and would often assign me to imprint the owls. I was taught patience and perseverance and when I finally got my own hunting bird at the age of 8 (supervised of course), I knew I didn’t want anything but be around birds of prey for the rest of my life. Thanks, grandad ❤️.
Q - What was your first bird?
A - Gypsy, my female Harris Hawk, was given to me by a family friend. She has always demanded respect and taught me to never underestimate the power of a bird of prey. 18 years on and we’re still going strong, she’s my leading lady.
Q - Do you work full time in Falconry?
A - I work full time as pest control falconer. Providing solutions for issues with pest species such as gulls and pigeons. Nothing is more effective for clearing these species than introducing a natural predator. I also provide lectures and experiences.
Q - What is the part of Falconry you enjoy the most?
A - Hunting. To gain the trust of a bird of prey and work along side them in the field is like nothing else.
Q - If you have one ambition or goal in Falconry, what is it?
A - Conservation is a huge passion of mine. To use falconry to raise awareness of the threats facing these incredible birds in their natural environments is so important.
Q - For those new to Falconry or thinking about getting started, what would be your one bit of key advice?
A - Research. There is so much to learn, so many challenges you will face and all of the individuals. Find an experienced falconer to guide you and give you advice.
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