Who is really in control?
The first couple of months, for both the falcon and pilot, can result in a subtle struggle for dominance. Initially, the pilot tends to be in control. Assuming they have had some previous practice, the pilot tends to be able to fly around until it’s decided that the falcon has pulled her weight. She is after all likely to be an inexperienced hawk. However, this doesn’t last long. The falcon gains some confidence, some skill in the sky, and she begins to take control of the situation, catching the pilot in situations where he was convinced he would get away.
The balance goes back and forth repeatedly. For a few consecutive days, the pilot has a good run, twisting and turning, having full-length flights involving a climb, a descent and even a low-level tail chase resulting in an intentional self-sacrifice.
But then the tables turn, the falcon has a great run, making the pilot feel completely at her mercy. The falcon climbs after the Roprey as expected, but she then puts in a burst of speed to close the gap, turns upside down and binds to the head of the prey at height! She begins to predict your movements. You turn one way but she’s already committed to the stoop in anticipation. You both dive, and as you pull up, she keeps going only to keep her momentum, throw up even higher than her quarry, to drop on it completely unexpectedly!
The design of the Roprey means that the balance can always be well maintained. A well-matched combination of pilot and falcon ensures that you don’t know which way the coin will land before the flight begins…