Yea, he is a pretty neat little guy. Really hoping that we can get him going free soon. He has some issues with carrying his food and will try to fly off when you reach for his jesses when he is on the glove.
Maybe that's his issue. We are trying to get a good weight for him. So far, 610 seems to be a fairly good weight for him. He has some issues with hooding too. The guy we bought him from told us he hooded perfectly. NOPE!
That can be a matter of technique and weight. One of the birds here at work, if he's not 'on' he's kind of a pain in the butt for hooding... and if my co-worker does have to hood him he's an out-right butthead and very uncooperative. My coworker's hooding technique is rough at best, it's not a smooth motion, he's kinda clunky and puts fingers on the back of the bird's head and pushes it into the hood... It took me weeks to get Razor to accept the hood to begin with [he came with an ill-fitting one] and then co-worker's handling issues rekindled the hooding problems. It could just be however you guys hood him is different than how his previous handler did.
I never thought about him being hooded differently before. That could be it. He gets very impatient with unhooding too. The second you touch the hood at all, he starts to freak out and jump around. My sponsor is way better at hooding than I am, but he has the same issue.
some people stroke the chest before hooding.. some with the chinstrap others with the braces, some don't do that at all. some have a light deft wrist flick sort of motion and others are more heavy handed. Individual technique and of course the bird's weight could play a lot into that. I hold the topknot between my thumb and first two fingers, stroke the bird's chest gently with the back of the hood (or in the case of Elena and Nantucket let them bite the braces) for a couple times then quickly and gently slip the hood on. I make sure its seated correctly then tighten the braces.
Sting is superpro at launching the hood from his head after I get it on and go for the braces. He does this backwards lean then a quick flick of his neck forward and off it flies. Little brat I was told accipiters never hood as nicely as falcons (especially passage birds)... he used to hood nice but now that he seems to have become accustomed to falconry life he does that launch every now and again.
I have tried doing the stroking thing. Sometimes he doesn't mind it, other times he does. I know that the bird is supposed to be an imprint. I always wait a few seconds before I tighten the braces when I put it on, and wait until he is calm before I pop the hood off when I loosen it. He has been like this since we got him, so we kinda think the previous handler had issues with the bird that he just wasn't telling us. We lowered his weight a little, hoping to see if that helps a little. I am gonna really watch his body language a little more closely to see what he likes and what he doesn't. The first couple of times I hooded him he didn't seem to mind as much. He likes me more that he likes my sponsor.
It always gets me when they do that. It's always fun when a bird figures out how to take a hood off, even when it's tightened. My sponsor had a Gyrfalcon that would scratch at his hood a bunch and would end up getting it off. The hood fit him just fine, he would just keep messing with it until he popped it off!