Falconer Mark de Vleminck from the Ardanwen Falconry in Meerbeke has been fascinated by animals and medieval times since he was a boy. The Middle Ages ended centuries ago so we can’t live like people did back then. Thankfully animals have remained unchanged, which is why Mark has made them his passion.
Since 2023, Falconry Ardanwen and Ardanwen Stables has a second branch namely in Cul des Sarts (Couvin).
Horses and birds
Mark learned how to ride horses. He took lessons for a number of years to give himself a good level of understanding before beginning to focus on birds. At the time Mark was working as a manager with mentally handicapped people on a children’s farm. That’s when he began to focus more and more on training birds such as parrots and parakeets before eventually moving onto birds of prey.
His own falconry
Mark had found his vocation. At first, he only trained birds belonging to a number of hunters and enthusiasts. He finally decided to start his own falconry. Mark has been running the company for a number of years now, alongside his staff. They perform demonstrations with both horses and birds of prey, have already worked together on shows with the famous Mario Luraschi, feature in films, TV series and commercials, and much more.
Intensive bird training
The falconry in Meerbeke and since 2023 also a branch in Cul de Sarts (Couvin) not only trains birds to achieve their flyweight, but also encourages them to trust their trainers. The training period takes much longer than normal but it’s then easier for the birds to perform in various shows. Mark has already discovered that an increasing number of trainers and falconers have started to adopt his methods. And with some success too.
The entire Ardanwen Falconry story has been told by Ketnet. You can hear it via this video clip.
Browse the website
Please remember that we live in a country governed by laws that every good falconer needs to follow. You will find detailed information on our demonstrations and falconry on horseback on our website, where you can read about education and training, pesticides and more. Our book “Birds of prey, falconry – a history of animal welfare” is also available via our website. Do you have any questions or would you like more information? Then please contact the Ardanwen Falconry.