Day in the life: Qasr Al Sarab's expert falconer
The daily routine of Naseer Muhammad Abdul Latif, at Qasr Al Sarab
The daily routine of Naseer Muhammad Abdul Latif, expert falconer at Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara
4:30am - My day starts with the preparation for the falcon and Saluki dog show. After getting up I head to the falcon house where I choose which falcons will perform for the sunrise show.
I collect the equipment prepared the evening before, take the falcons, and head to the activity site with my two colleagues. One assists me with the falcon during the show, and the other one takes care of the Saluki dogs.
6:00am - The show starts. The activity guide shares insightful information with the guests on falconry in the UAE and hunting with falcons, while we get ready to release the falcons one by one. The first falcon is released by my colleague, and I agitate the lure — a bundle of feathers — which the bird tries to catch.
Once he has performed a few rounds, showcasing his incredible speed and precision, I let him catch the lure and reward him with a piece of meat.
Then comes the moment to release the Saluki dogs, which when they run, can reach a speed of 65km per hour. Not that impressive after the 320km per hour of the Peregrine falcon, but still remarkable!
8:00am — Once the show is over we return to the falcon house and take care of the birds. I allow myself a pause for breakfast, and head back to the falcon house afterwards to prepare food for the birds and clean the house. It is very important to keep their environment neat and clean as birds are fragile and very sensitive to their surroundings.
10:00am - 2:00pm — I spend a lot of time around the falcons during the day, to ensure they remain familiar with me. In order to become a falconer, your bird has to get used to you, and to your voice. It’s important to establish a good relationship, and it is of course necessary to spend time with them to ensure this mutually trustful relationship lasts.