Falcons in the park give Qatar visitors a taste of ‘The hunt’ (photos)

All photos by Ray Toh

As part of its ongoing exhibition The Hunt, the Museum of Islamic Art hosted a demonstration of falcons and salukis over the weekend at the MIA Park.

The event gave residents a peek into how the animals are cared for and to watch them in action as they hunt.

According to photographer Ray Toh:

“Many had seen falcons but to see them in flight and hunting is very rare as it always happen in the desert and away from crowded areas.”

Hunting in Qatar

Speaking to Doha News, Farooq Al-Elji from the Al Gannas Society, which helped organize the event, said that the group is stepping up the number of public activities involving hunting animals.

That includes participation in National Day events at Katara Beach with falconry shows and demonstrations.

Al Gannas Falcon/Saluki event

Ray Toh

Al Gannas Falcon/Saluki event

One of their biggest events – the Marmi Festival – will take place on Jan. 1, 2016 at Sealine.

There, thousands of falcons and salukis will compete for different titles.

Registration for the festival will be from Dec. 25-28, daily from 4pm-8pm at the Al-Gannas Society building 33 at Katara.

Later, on Jan. 30, there will be a “beauty pageant” of sorts, Al-Elji added. The prize for the winning animal will be QR500,000 and a gold/diamond-encrusted feather.

The Hunt, which curates the collections of Qatari and Turkish museums and explores and celebrates the sport of hunting, as well as the related activities of polo, feasting and fighting, is on display at the MIA until Jan. 9, 2016.

More information about it can be found here.

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