The Life of a Game Hawker with Shawn Hayes (1/9) (Free)

01/09/2024 07:00 PM - 08:00 PM ET


  • Free


The third installment of our lecture series is a screening of Game Hawker, a Patagonia film, and a conversation with its star, falconer Shawn Hayes. Shawn leads a life of devotion — to both his falcons and the mountains and prairies beneath their wings. For Shawn, the ancient practice of falconry is more than a deep partnership with raptors: it's become his life's work. Through his skill and finesse with these birds of prey, he’s carved a space for himself in a culture where people of color haven't always been welcome. Shawn’s role as an American falconry ambassador has taken him to the far reaches of the globe, through strongholds of tradition and conservation. This film is about more than what humans can train birds to do — but what those birds can teach us about living in partnership with wild creatures and wild places.


After the short film, we will hold a Q&A with Shawn himself. The conversation is sure to touch on topics including wildlife conservation, identity, and belonging in the outdoors. Shawn has a plethora of stories on his life adventures, so you don't want to miss this event!


About the Speaker:
Shawn Hayes is a world-renowned falconer and raptor conservationist. His interest in birds started at the young age of 8 years old in Southern California, when he acquired his first hawk. For the past three decades Shawn has resided in the Eastern Sierras in the areas of Bishop and Mammoth Lakes, California. A perfect area where he has access to the many acres of public land to enjoy his practice of falconry, along with raptor and bird watching. Shawn is recognized for his ability to build relationships with the falcons he handles, flies, and hunts. For the falcons he trains, he strives to create a flying style close to how falcons fly and hunt in the wild. His greatest enjoyment is simply watching his falcons fly. Shawn feels a sense of urgency to educate falconers and non-falconers alike about the challenges raptors face, such as loss of habitat and diminishing food supply. With his many years of experience, he has been invited to travel the world, sharing his knowledge on both falconry and raptor conservation. Shawn’s life and falconry are chronicled in two films, The Perfect Flight (Speculative Films) and Game Hawker (Patagonia Films). With his sense of adventure and connection to nature he continues to inspire others to break the boundaries of who belongs outdoors.


The NYC Audubon Lecture Series is made possible by the support of Claude and Lucienne Bloch.


Left Photo: Game Hawker poster depicting Shawn Hayes looking into the distance with a falcon perched on his arm. Credit: Patagonia.

Right Photo: Shawn smiles towards the camera. He has dark brown skin and medium-length locs, and is wearing a tan visor, blue jacket, and binoculars. On his left hand he wears a falconry glove, on which a Peregrine Falcon perches while eating a fresh chunk of meat. Credit: Courtesy of Cynthia Pohlman.

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