23rd June 2016
Thankyou everyone who has written in following our flying display at Duncombe last week. To answer many of your enquiries:
Remy and I have been designing the finer points of the rocrow for the last 12 months and it is now in production phase. We are hoping to have the production model launched at the falconry event in Andalusia, Spain in January where we will fly it with falcons. Meanwhile we are planning the next public rofalconry event in the north of England possibly in September hosted by the Yorkshire Hawking Club. Currently we are still rigorously testing prototypes. The young falcons are just starting at the moment and we will do three months of flight testing with: 4 female peregrine/sakers, 3 male gyr/peregrines, a female New Zealand Falcon, a female 7/8 gyrfalcon, 2 male gyrfalcons, a male peregrine and we hope one or two gyr/New Zealand falcons. Some of these falcons have already been killing wild crows about 3 days a week, and rocrows 4 days a week, so we know that roprey can easily be alternated with hunting wild prey. This year we will enter some of the young birds first at rocrows and then, once they are flying well and high, enter them at real crows. The rocrow has a faster top speed, faster acceleration and is more manoeuvrable than the robara. This enables less experienced pilots to use the additional thrust to get themselves out of trouble when the falcon is putting the pressure on. But it can give too much advantage to skilled pilots and for competitions the amount of thrust available can be stepped down at the transmitter to maintain the balance between predator and prey. Because the rocrow is more hot to handle, the stabiliser option is more critical and I have certainly found it to be a life saver when I have been learning to fly the rocrow. It means that you can safely get maybe 50 or 100 metres up into the sky and have enough sky below you so that if you do something stupid, you have room to recover yourself.
We have had a lot of enquiries from falconers flying game falcons from waiting-on (anwerten). The ropheasant is already well on in production and of course all the roprey must have very well padded heads to withstand the blows from a stooping falcon without injuring the falcon. We may link up with some game falconers on this because we do not want our own crow falcons to see pheasants.
The roprey can also be painted to resemble other species and we will be supplying some unpainted models so that you can paint your own, from sage grouse to francolin, to Australasian magpies!
We have also had a lot of enquiries from people with goshawks and Harris Hawks wanting a ropheasant for pursuit flights. We will be doing tests on this later on in the season on how to encourage goshawks to undertake longer and more challenging flights, and how to use the ropheasant as a fitness aid especially in those short winter days when time is limited.
We have also designed the rocrow to be versatile and safe for flying demonstrations in confined spaces. For this a small agile falcon is best. Unfortunately the two New Zealand falcons we had lined up to fly at Duncombe both laid eggs and could not come, but we have been having great fun with these falcons because they are very persistent chasers and can turn very tightly. We have had a lot of enquiries from demo fliers and hopefully these people will have rocrows and their falcons all tuned up ready for next spring.
For pest controllers, we have options of either a roperegrine or a rogoshawk. These can be used at landfill sites and airfields, either on their own or in conjunction with live raptors. Rocrows and rogulls
can also be used for training raptors for pest control work.
In the Middle East we have raised sponsorship for some international teams to come together for the first time in UAE and Kuwait to develop the robara competition rules in December and January. If you are interested in this aspect please get in touch.
For the sports science buffs we have options on both the Robara and the Rocrow for barometric altimeters and varios accurate to 10 cm, for air speed and GPS-based ground speed and position plotting. This enables you to plot the entire flight performance and also you can use it in conjunction with a tag on the falcons, such as the new Marshall tag.
For people entering the sport, we recommend that you do your basic pilot training on a flight simulator such as Real Flight. These packages are not expensive now and are very realistic. Then go on to flying a cheap foamie trainer plane before trying roprey. This is the route that I took and although my piloting will never be as good as hotshots like Remy, I can certainly fly well enough to get all my falcons going and hunting well. So if I can do it, there is hope for you!
At the moment we are handling the distribution and servicing direct from our factory and warehouse in UK, for the whole of Europe. We are in discussions with potential distributors in North America.
Distributors for the Middle East are already listed on the website.
Nick with ropheasant
the Longbyre (Wingbeat factory)
The Forge (Wingbeat development workshops)
28th of September 2015
Wingbeat has distributors in UAE, Qatar and Kuwait. For all other countries distribution is handled direct from the factory in UK. The distributors are also able to supply spare parts and provide servicing. If you wish to speak in Arabic, please contact our Middle East Representative.
Wingbeat Representative (Middle East)