A day out with the birds
Going with a theme here, focusing on days out and things that you can do to keep the kids entertained in the holidays. If like our family you are passionate about nature and interested in new experiences why not try a day out with the birds. There are a few places around but if you are in the Nottingham, Sheffield area I can recommend Hawks of Steele. You can catch them at Wheelgate Theme Park as well as at Thorsby Hall and Rufford Old Hall.
What can you expect from a day out with the birds?
There are different packages so I suggest you go to the Hawks of Steele website to check out the experiences. I have attended the falconry experience as well as the owl experience. Both were purchased as groupon vouchers and I can honestly say that they were both incredible value for money.
The Falconry Experience
We attended the Falconry Experience on a beautiful crisp winter morning… which quickly turned into a slightly snowy, wet winter morning but this did not detract from the experience. Obviously some birds find this kind of weather difficult to fly in and the guys at Hawks of Steel would never put their birds in any danger or discomfort, they’re part of their family after all!
So we started out with a walk in the beautiful grounds of Thorsby Hall with Gus the Harris Hawk. Without giving too much away we got to fly Gus and see exactly what a Harris Hawk was capable of. After this we were entertained further by Wheezy the Barn Owl, and Rambo the Golden Eagle.
For the last part of the morning we were treated to flying Freya the juvenile Falcon and encouraged to have a go working with a lure. It was easy to see how much the birds were respected and cared for, and how they enjoyed performing their displays. After a warming drink back at the office and a cuddle with the Lion Eared Owl the experience was over but definitely not forgotten.
The Owl Experience
We decided to return to Hawks of Steel to participate in an Owl experience for the family as my daughter was previously too young. She was a little apprehensive to begin with, worrying as she was so small about how big the birds would be.
The first Owl we were introduced to however, stole her breath away as it was the tiny Boobook Owl from Australia. Gaining in confidence we then met a Tawny Owl, and once again Wheezy the Barn Owl. As naughty as ever Wheezy decided to hide up in a tree until Carl the handler finally managed to get him to fly to my son.
Finally we were totally entertained by the beguiling Great Grey Owl, again who decided to misbehave, giving everyone a giggle. Reticent at first due to the sheer size of him my daughter was soon encouraged to have the bird fly to her. She was amazed at how lightly the Owl landed on her glove, and can’t wait for more!
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