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Black Mountains Falconry Centre
Ranked #277 of 568 things to do in South Wales
Attraction details
Reviewed January 18, 2014

We bought each other a day hunting with falcons as a Christmas present because we had a great experience with the centre a year earlier learning to handle and fly hawks, falcons and owls. We went on a beautiful crisp January day where we met 2 other clients together with Roger, who owns the centre with his wife June. We also met Martin, a close friend of Roger who had brought along 2 of his own falcons. Also there were Gareth and Lee together with their dogs Lola and Max (German Wirehair Pointers) and Cole (Cocker Spaniel). Their role was to find and flush out the partridges - if they could be found.

To our great delight all 4 falcons were Peregrines. These are my wife's favourite bird due mostly to the fact that they are the fastest (some say 250 mph in the dive).

We walked across the open fields of neighbouring farms surrounded on 4 sides by the beautiful mountains that surround Abergavenny - there was an almost clear blue sky and a blazing sun and so we didn't feel the cold.

It was fascinating to hear from Roger, Martin, Gareth and Lee about how the dogs and falcons work together and throughout our time they were all very friendly and informative.

The dogs flushed out partridge from the hedgerows and the falcons tried their best to catch them. The first 2 birds were unsuccessful (but that's how it is in the wild). On the 3rd occasion Martin flew his favourite bird - Casper. After flying straight into the nearest tree for a five minute pre-flight rest Casper then really took off! Casper circled so high it was difficult to spot him against the blue sky - the dogs flushed out a partridge and Casper dived down to intercept it.

We have only seen Peregrines diving on wildlife television programmes and so it is difficult to really understand just how high they fly and just how fast they come down, and to get a sense of scale. Casper came down so fast that it was difficult to track him - about two thirds of the way down he even seemed to accelerate. The partridge had no chance!

It was without doubt the most magnificent sight we have ever seen of falcons or hawks in action.

During the day we also saw buzzards and red kites, and even a migrating Osprey.

All in all it was a great day out - a real experience. Roger and his friends were just so welcoming and patient. They have real affinity for the dogs, birds and the countryside - it was a pleasure to share it with them for a few hours.

Highly recommended.

Thank HelloKaren60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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13 - 15 of 15 reviews

Reviewed March 25, 2013

This awesome experience was even better than we could have imagined !!! A hands on experience, starting with holding the birds, and then progressing to flying them to your hand to eat a piece of meat. (hawk and owl experience). We only wish we were in season to spend the day hunting with them, as the love and understanding of Roger and his wife are second to none!!!

Even if you only think this is something for you, then consider doing this !! Watching the worlds largest owl curl it's talons so as not to hurt the bare hand it's presented with shows real respect from the bird - and its this love and understanding that gives this falconry centre the 5 star !!!

1  Thank Fuzzy T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 1, 2011

Bought a half day 'Hawk and Owl experience' as a birthday present for my husband and I went along as a spectator but wished I had booked myself in to have a go as well.

A very interactive experience, after a short introduction to how to handle the birds and some of the background on falconry, we went outside and were introduced to the birds.

There was a group of 10 people and everyone got to hold a variety of different birds, and had the opportunity to let the birds fly to them and eat a piece of meat from their gloves and let the birds fly back to their perches.

All the way through we were given a personal description of the different personalities of the birds and why and how they were trained, how they were kept and why they did certain things.

Without going into too much detail (and spoiling it for anyone else) a very interactive, up close and personal encounter with several birds of prey.

My husband liked it so much he wants to go back and I have a new found interest in birds of prey - they are wonderful creatures and we got to experience them in a safe, friendly and fun environment.


3  Thank marymacb66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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