Hawkin'Gear ~ The Best Harness Yet!

by Craig Nicol


How many of you have had the hawk of a life time in your grasp until that lure pigeon falls to the ground like a rock?

All of you?

Well, here is the best pigeon harness yet!

As an artist and maker of falconry equipment, I am always on the lookout for a better functional design and more attractive appearance. This design originated with John Moore and ended up with me. After a weekend trapping with this lure and pulling in peregrine after peregrine, merlin after merlin, Cooper's after Cooper's, sharpies after sharpies, and the occasional bold kestrel, I knew I had found the harness of a life time. All that was needed was a little fine tuning and the design of a noose pad.

The following pictures/illustrations will show you how this incredible combo goes together. I will not elaborate on the material list for the fact that these harnesses can be made of nylon, cloth, leather, or any other material you so desire. The noose pad can also be made from a various assortment of materials with your desired weight of fishing line. The one thing that you will need to continue to do with this pattern is to use Velcro. The Velcro portion of this design allows for the individual fit of each bird that is used. The harness will not be too baggy (allowing for the bird to escape) or too tight (resulting in rock pigeon syndrome). Plus, you can use it as a harness with or without the noose pad.

So now all you need to do is follow the pattern and see for yourself.

1) After cutting the patterns out (click here for a full size copy of the pattern you can print), you will need to put them together. Attach the center of the strap to the short tongue of the harness body and fasten with a grommet. This grommet hole will serve as a place to attach a drag or lure line.

2) Secondly you will want to attach one side of a snap to the harness. The other side of the snap will attach to the noose pad.

3) Place the Velcro on the harness. Make sure to sew the Velcro onto the harness (so as not to come loose later).

4) The harness is now ready to use.

5) Take the cut out Noose Pad and attach the second side of the snap. This is also when you will want to sew the monofilament line through the leather (or other type of material) and tie in place. A touch of epoxy on the underside will help hold the knots in place. I use the same nooses as on my BC's.

6) To attach the Noose Pad to the harness, you will pull the corresponding harness straps through the slots in the Noose Pad (as lettered on the pattern and previous diagrams). Once in place fasten the snap.

7) Place the bird's head through the harness hole and wrap strap B behind the wing and under the belly of the bird. Then place strap C down the keel and Velcro it to strap B. Place strap A behind the opposite wing and Velcro onto strap B & C. You now have a harnessed bird.

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