Birds of Prey Centre Activities & Events Home
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Education

Educational/School/Group visits

The English School of Falconry Bird of Prey and Conservation Centre is one of the largest bird of prey centres in the UK, home to over 200 birds of prey, varying in species of owls, hawks, eagles, falcons, hawks,kites and vultures. The centre is committed to the conservation of birds of prey and their habitats. Raising awareness and educating our future generations is an important aspect of our work.

We welcome school/youth groups to the centre where they can learn about our many species of birds of prey, their habits and thier habitats. With over 200 birds on display, talks, flying displays, and opportunities to handle the birds there will be plenty of activites to keep pupils engaged. Alternatively we offer outreach visits where a falconer from the centre will visit with a selection of owls or birds.

School/Youth Visits to the centre

A day at the bird of prey centre is an enjoyable and educational experience, home to over 200 birds of prey form the largest in the world the Andean Condor to one of the smallest our native Little Owl. We welcome student groups of all ages, from nursery school children to post graduate students.

Upon arrival all groups will be met by a falconer and given an introductory talk, which covers the centres work and the rules whilst visiting.

A typical day for your school visit will include:

- Opportunity to handle a native species of bird of prey.

- Watching the 11.15am Eagle meet and greet, and 12.00pm flying display.

- Viewing all the avairies around the centre, many of which house endangered species and native species of birds.

Additional activities available at no extra charge:

- A talk from a falconer on a specific subject you may be covering.

- Have a go at flying a bird of prey.

Outreach Visits

We have been visiting schools for many years and we believe the best way of learning about birds of prey and retaining the knowledge is by seeing them up close. We are able to cater our visits to children of all ages, our visit will include:

- A choice of birds from: Owls, native species of birds or a variety of species including owls, hawks, eagles and falcons.

- A talk on each of the species.

- Free flying display of some of the species.

- Question and answer time.

Talks are tailored to the specific needs of each class covering different subjects such as habitat, conservation, food chains, adaptations and night and day. The birds can be a focus in Art, Geaography, History projects and an inspiration for creative writing.

 

For more information on booking your school visit and cost please contact us on 01767 627527 or 01767 627752.

FREE Teachers packs available to download here (pdf/688kB).

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Photography Workshops - July 26th, August 15th, and September 19th 10.00am - 4.00pm

The English School of Falconry is pleased to have local professional photographer, Darren Harbar offering his extensive experience at our workshops. Darren not only runs his own photography business in nearby Biggleswade but he's also an internationally published photographer with an eye for action images. Before setting up his own business, Darren served as the editor of Which Digital Camera? magazine and as the test and technique editor on Practical Photography. Darren is therefore highly experienced in delivering technique training and indeed now runs his own photography training academy. We know that every photographer has different levels of knowledge, so our day starts with some classroom time where our professional photographer will be able to get an idea of what you already know. There may well be some technique training in this part of the day that some students will already know, but our workshop is designed to accommodate the entry-level user as well as the enthusiast. In the classroom, we will cover the use of shutter speeds and aperture so you will learn how to select these on your camera. You will also be taught about ISO sensitivity, metering and those all important focussing techniques that will be well-utilised during the practical part of your day. After an hour or so in the classroom, you will be mentally equipped to face your photography challenges with our birds of prey. The first practical part of the day will cover the technique of photographing static birds. You'll have plenty of time with the handlers to get some great images, and we will show you how to use the natural backgrounds to get more natural images. After a buffer lunch, we explore the challenges of capturing a bird in flight. This is where your classroom work will fall into place and you'll get a chance to put it into practise. We'll start you off nice and slow with some more sedate flyers, and then work up to some faster birds throughout the afternoon. By the time the mid-afternoon public arena display starts, you'll be ready to try your hand at a whole range of birds as they perform. After the show, we have the chance to sit down and evaluate your images and experiences from the day. This is the time to ask lots of questions and our professional photographer will be on hand to guide you. Course Requirements Each student must own a DSLR or CSC with a removable lens. The training will be centred around digital cameras and will include technique on how to manually set the camera. We therefore do not recommend these courses for film camera users or for those with compact cameras and those with built-in-zooms. We will ask students to confirm the type of camera they use, to ensure compatibility with the technique training. Students will need to ensure that they have ample space on the cameras memory card to capture multiple images during the course of the day. They will also need to ensure that batteries are fully charged, and they have spares/chargers if required. It is recommended that students have a telephoto fixed/zoom lens (something like a 70-300mm is ideal). This is not essential, but will make a significant difference to the potential results they can achieve from the training. £99.00 per person, places are limited, we advise you book your place early, please call 01234 742766 or 01234 742362.
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