Corfe Castle small 78 dpi
Corfe Castle ruins

Last Sunday we visited Corfe Castle, where they were holding a medieval falconry show. It was fascinating; we learned a lot about how to train the birds in the old way, and were treated to a flying display. We’d had no idea how many different types of falcons exist. On display were a Saker falcon, Lanner falcon, Peregrine falcon and the smallest one was a Barbary falcon. As its name suggests it was originally from the Barbary Coast of Africa, and brought to the United Kingdom around the time of Queen Elizabeth the first.

saker falcon dpi 78
Saker falcon

The Saker falcon seen here was definitely the star of the show when it came to a flying display. The others were in various states of training and were not allowed as much freedom, but this one just loved to soar, right up to the top of the castle, and then swoop down just above the heads of the crowd. It was magnificent.

Barbary falcon small dpi 78
Barbary Falcon

Falconry at Corfe Castle dpi 72Although the Barbary falcon was the smallest, it appears it’s the most fearless, and I certainly wouldn’t want to meet it when it’s hungry! It will attack an eagle, or any prey it deems worthy, without a second thought, whereas the other falcons may look for an easier prey.

We thoroughly enjoyed the couple of hours we spent watching and learning, and in such a beautiful place as this.

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14 thoughts on “Falcons at Corfe Castle

  1. Beautiful birds, and a good opportunity to get some close up photos of them. I love trying to get shots of the kestrels, buzzards and red kites that are quite common around here, but I mostly only manage to capture distant blurs!

  2. Fascinating post, Chris, with information that I did not know. I had no idea there were that many falcons. Great photographs too!!! Thank you so much for enlightening me today. Love, Amy ❤

  3. What a fascinating experience… that must have been a little scary being dive bombed by falcons! But truly beautiful birds.

  4. Thank You, Chris, for taking Us on that journey, and for the Beautiful photographs. Your narrative makes the journey and the things You saw and enjoyed come alive! Kudos and Thanks. Give Us More! (You see, Yesudas is Greedy! Haha). …Another way of saying Encore! …Love and Regards. 🙂

  5. what a wonderful experience with those birds of prey. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting a Saker falcon up close, but not a Barbary falcon, which looks a lot like a Peregrine falcon!

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