Becoming a falconer….
So you want to become a falconer? What is Falconry?
We define falconry as the active pursuit and taking of wild quarry (hunting) with a trained raptor – a hawk, falcon, eagle or owl (in its wild habitat). A falconer is a person who hunts with a bird of prey. If you’re not actively hunting wild quarry with a trained raptor, with the intent of taking said quarry, then you are not practicing Falconry. There are other options to work with birds of prey, such as rehabilitation and education.
It takes extreme time, commitment, and dedication to become a falconer.
Here in the Commonwealth there are specific requirements one must have to become a licensed falconer:
• You must be 15 years of age (with consent of parents or guardian) or older
• You must possess a valid state hunting license (you will have to take hunter education classes before being issued a hunting license.)
• You must have a sponsor – a licensed General or Master class falconer who will act as a source of guidance and information for your two year apprentice period.
• You must pass a written examination administered by Mass Fisheries & Wildlife
•You must build your hawk house/mews andpass an inspection by the state and have all necessary equipment, i.e. glove, bath pan, leashes, swivels, scale, etc.
• You must fill out your paperwork and pay $25.00 for your state falconry permit.
To request an information packet contact State Falconry Coordinator at:
Mass Div of Fisheries and Wildlife
Attn: Erik Amati Coordinator
One Rabbit Hill Road
Westboro, MA 01851