Our Harris’s hawk was legally bred in captivity by a falconer who was also a VINS volunteer. The falconer donated Chesterland to us, so that we would have the opportunity to work with a fully-flighted, highly trainable bird that no Vermonters would ever see here in the wild.
Chesterland can do the longest and most impressive flight demonstrations of any of our birds. During our outdoor programs, he chases a rabbit-shaped lure (a prop used to train birds) and catches bits of mice out of midair. He has thrilled many a visitor by flying low over their heads. He is one of the most energetic birds we work with, and he is often impatient to fly. Although he occasionally decides to fly somewhere we’d prefer he didn’t—a tree branch during our outdoor programs, or the light fixtures in the classroom—he is eager to return to the glove and is therefore one of our most trustworthy and dependable birds.