Hawkeye News & Bulletins
Hawkeye falconer Dan soars into East York
On top of the metal box was a plastic dish and a pair of brown leather gloves, but inside was something special: A one-and-a-half-year-old falcon named Jerry.
Jerry is a bird of prey, one of many that Frankian uses to scare away pests from businesses and homes. Birds of prey — like owls, eagles, hawks and falcons — hunt and kill small animals for food. They can also scare larger animals, and so Frankian, the owner of Hawkeye Bird Control, guarantees he can remove and control some of those animals with what he says are humane and environmentally friendly techniques.
So when it comes to animals like raccoons, pigeons and seagulls, Frankian told the students on class assignment that homeowners have two conventional options: they can euthanize the pests or relocate them a kilometer away from their home.
Frankian says a better alternative is to stimulate fear into the animal. “If I kill you, you won’t tell the person next to you that you are scared of me,” Frankian said. “If I scare you, the first thing you are going to do is you tell the person next you that you are scared of this guy. It’s the same thing with them. If I scare one seagull, and if I kill only one of them, the rest of them are going to go ‘Ahh! I don’t want to be anywhere near him.’”
Aside from instilling fear into pests, Frankian’s birds have also entertained movie-goers and television-viewers. Three of his owls were in the Harry Potter films, and some of his animals were part of Panasonic television ads for plasma TVs.
In the course of his work, Frankian has become a master of falconry, a technique used for thousands of years for hunting. In more than 25 years, Frankian has had to deal with pests all over Canada. In one home, he dealt with an infestation of more than 32 raccoons. Then there was the coffee shop where he had to stop a neighbourhood bear from eating too many donuts.
One could say that his job is unconventional, but to Frankian, it’s a job worth doing — for himself, for Toronto and for the birds.
Dan Frankian and Jerry, teaching students about pests, birds and Harry Potter.