Abu Dhabi: ADIHEX, Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition, has unveiled an exciting new competition aimed at selecting the “Best Integrated Set of Falconry Tools for Hunting Trips.”
For falconers who engage in raising and training falcons, acquiring a comprehensive set of tools is essential. This includes the falcon hood, gauntlet, jess, leash, swivel, tracking device, traditional lure, and modern lure, all of which are neatly organized in a suitable bag.
The falconry bag, traditionally known as the “mikhla,” is an open-topped sack made of linen or hemp, usually carried over the shoulder with a short strap. Some falconers prefer to securely carry it under their armpit. Inside the bag, falconers store their collection of falconry tools.
Taking place from August 23rd to 29th, 2023, at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), ADIHEX is supported by the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi, the International Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC), and ADNEC. The competition is sponsored by Caracal International LLC, with industry partnerships from prestigious organizations such as the International Association for Falconry and Conservation of Birds of Prey and the European Foundation for Falconry and Conservation.
The judging criteria, established by the Emirates Falconers’ Club and the judging committee, focus on the presentation of a collection of traditional falconry tools and supplies. Factors such as manufacturing quality, appropriate design of the bag or product, aesthetic appearance, adherence to traditional aesthetics, materials used, and affordability will be taken into consideration. Participation is limited to manufacturers of handmade falconry tools.
While falconry has a long history, recent technological advancements have sparked an interest in preserving its authentic heritage while incorporating sustainable modern approaches. This includes reinventing traditional tools using contemporary methods, improving training techniques for enhanced efficiency, and prioritizing the safety and well-being of falcons. Efforts are also being made to minimize injuries and illnesses among falcons, improve their treatment, and facilitate their movement when tethered.
The competition not only celebrates the craftsmanship and innovation of falconry tool manufacturers but also aims to elevate the practice of falconry while respecting its cultural and historical significance.