Top critical review
25 people found this helpful
Why not let the bird be your book?
on 11 January 2006
This is a great book for an enthusiast. A few years ago it was my best Christmas present, and I read it from cover to cover many times. I believed avidly everything that miss Parry Jones said, and became her number 1 fan.
However, after working with birds for only 2 years, some of which are rescued, I have learnt that sometimes falconers get it wrong. The traditional method of trainnig a bird of prey is rigid and no good at all if you want a bird that comes to you because it wants to. Believe it or not, Jemima, birds have different personalities. They all react differently to the training method, as well.
So, whilst this book is great to have, because it tells you what birds are and what birds are not (they are (definitely!) not pets, and if you are to keep them they take up a huge amount of time and effort (and heartache!) to keep happy), it is not a bible. The bird is the bible. I have a buzzard who I consider to be far superior to her description, and to be honest I haven't encountered any bird who fits true to the descriptions. I have also met many birds that did not take kindly to being starved (not feeding the bird until it does what you want it to), and it has scarred them for life.
If you are truly interested in this subject, read up on the BIOLOGY of birds. Something like Nick Fox's Understanding the Bird of Prey is the best sort of thing. Read how they work, so that you know the boundaries. Don't read someone's account of what works for them.