Sarah Hewitt for Swerve,Calgary Herald
Open spaces are the best hunting grounds for birds like gyrfalcons. Guinness, a six-year-old trained falcon, flexes its talons around the leather gauntlet Jon Groves wears on his forearm. Groves slips off the hood and, with his teeth and spare hand, unties the jesses that tether the raptor to his fist. Guinness leaps and with a few powerful wing beats, climbs aggressively into the sky. Groves flushes a partridge from the wheat stubble and Guinness tucks in its wings and dives.
“When it’s really cold out,” Groves says, “you can actually hear them cutting through the air if you’re close enough—that’s pretty amazing.”...