Dorchester Falconry Park
Lewell Mill Lane,
Dorchester DT2 8AN
This is a new attraction close to historic Dorchester. Though the attraction itself is new, the owners are very experienced and knowledgeable falconers.
As we arrived, their 11am falconry display was about to start so we headed straight to the field where the birds are flown. Along the way, we walked past where their eagles are kept and were struck by the size of these impressive birds. The line up of 7 different birds included the American bald eagle and ended with a massive vulture.
We all found the falconry display fascinating and informative. Seeing these beautiful birds taking their turn flying extremely close and at the same time learning a little about the different ways each bird would behave was transfixing.
As an animal lover, it is lovely to listen to someone who truly understands and can relate to the creatures they work with. The owner, Martin Ballam, flew several birds, some were old timers that knew exactly what to do, whilst a couple were very young and you could see how experienced Martin was, both informing us about the stages the bird was in in its training whilst simultaneously keeping an eye on and coaxing a very green young bird to try something new. His handling of these birds was very quiet, and you could see the connection he had with them. He also was humorous and light hearted.
After the display we took a look at the many birds they had at the centre. For us it was the owls we fell in love with, but a huge range of different birds of prey were housed there.
As we drove away we were already talking about visiting again.