What should my first bird-of-prey be?

The majority of beginners choose a Harris’ hawk, as they are hardy, easy to train and fly, and not easily lost. You could equally well have a redtailed buzzard, although they have to be flown with a little more care. They will both take quarry very well, and last for many years (maybe 30 years in the case of a redtail!). There are other species which can be ok for beginners, but they may not be any good for taking quarry, or you may need closer supervision or much more commitment than you are prepared for. Some people are keen to have owls, but they are unlikely to take quarry readily, and are generally much harder work, even just to get them to fly to you.

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