Last year from August to October P.J. Simonis flew an assortment of birds to control the presence of gulls on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ. This year Ocean City put the project out to bid and Wildlife Control Specialists llc won the contract with the lowest bid. In an interview with OCNJ Daily Joe Kosakowski of WCSllc announced they would be hiring P.J. Simonis to train and fly their raptors over the boardwalk in 2020. Joe owns WCSllc with his son Matt.
Last year Ocean City, NJ hired East Coast Falcons to clear the Gulls off the Boardwalk in the resort town that regards itself as Americas Greatest Family Resort. The program was a huge success. In the video below you can see some clips from 2019 from Ocean City and hear and Interview from Bill Spadea with Joe Kosakowski discussing FBBA (Falconry Based Bird Abatement) with one of his Harris’s Hawks, Seven. Joe, along with his son Matt, own one of the companies that bid on the contract along with East Coast Falcons and Foster Falconry. The contract was won by Wildlife Control Specialists llc., Joe and Matt’s company, for the 2020 season. Due to the Covid 19/ Coronavirus Epidemic it is uncertain when the contract will start but it was slated for mid-May. WCSllc has stated they will hire P.J. Simonis to fulfill the contract. P.J. was the falconer who handled the contract for East Coast Falcons in 2019. You can see the project documented on Resource Raptors on Facebook.
This beautiful girl gets flown every day. Another part of her day is what we call weathering. Weathering is basically putting the bird out in the weather. Giving them an opportunity to soak up some vitamin D from the sun, take a bath in some fresh, clean water and just take in the fresh air.
It is very important to get a new bird used to you when you first start the training process. They make positive associations with food so we try to get them used to the lure we will ultimate use while they eat as well as following up with an audible cue such as a whistle. Today was the first time this peregrine falcon ate off the lure and then she stepped to the fist to finish her meal.
Some new falconers have been added to the mix and we can’t wait to share the news officially. New birds are in training too and you are not going to be disappointed. Here is a little sneak peek at one of the new birds. She is a very large 1400g white Gyr Falcon.