Trapping Season


OFA Officers

Jonathan Coleman

Chris Kimble
Vice President

Bart Russell

Shane Bullard

Rob Huber

OFA is an affiliate of the North American Falconers' Association

OFA is a proud contributor to The Falconry Fund


OFA Is a proud contributor to Quail Forever


Gayla Salvati


Gayla Salvati

How long have you been an OFA member?

3 years

Have you ever held a position in OFA?  


Where do you live?  

Perry Ok

Job or School?  

Large Animal Veterinarian and Artist


Phil Salvati- husband

What got you interested in falconry?  

My life long love of animals and birds,  along with my passion for hunting and coupled with my husband's desire to be a falconer....all lead to the inevitable conclusion that we both needed to be falconers.  It was a very natural fit for both of us and something we enjoy sharing.

Who was your sponsor? (or mentors and influences?)  

Tim Jessell of Stillwater.  Ironically I met Tim at an artist's workshop after two years of unsuccessfully trying to find a sponsor.  I was watching a demonstration of his art work and he mentioned he was a falconer.  The rest is hisory!

What bird(s) do you currently fly?  

Started with a Redtail and released her, which was harder to do than I thought it would be.  I am currently trying to aquire a Harris Hawk and look forward to trapping my next Redtail.

What birds have you flown in the past?  


What was your favorite bird, and why?  

I don't have a lot of experience across the species, so it is hard to compare.  However, if personality matters I think I lean towards what some refer to as "dirt birds".  I think of them as the pickup trucks of the raptor world.  Yes, I know the falcons are sleek and fast like the little red sports car...but I am basically a pickup type personality myself.  So, the Redtails and the Harris Hawks are right down my alley!

What birds do you plan to fly, or would like to fly?  

I would like to try them all of course!  As I gain more experience with birds and falconry in general, I'm sure I will find my hunting style and preference for species will  change.   I do have a secret love for owls.  When I mention that to most falconers I get some eye rolling, but when I mention to genuine owl folks, they really light up.  I think the challenges associated with flying an owl are rather fascinating and it would be interesting to try, but I see that as down the road.

What is your favorite quarry?  

My husband and I were duck hunting fanatics even before falconry, so that is always on the list.  Rabbits are a given too but I would really be interested in working a bird on squirrels.  I don't have a suitable squirrel bird at the moment, but that will hopefully change.

Do you have other animals?  

Yes.  I am a large animal veterinarian, I met my husband as a pointing dog trainer and we live on a farm.  That is a formula that equates to animals, animals, animals.  Horses, dogs, goats, chickens and really pretty much anything else you can name.

Favorite falconry story?  

With my very first bird I made a very rookie mistake.  About three weeks into manning my Redtail, I put her outside on a hoop perch to clean the area in the house where we were keeping her.  She was tied with her leash and naturally got loose and was gone.   Not only was I devastated that she was gone, I had basically killed her because she was dangling a leash when she went.  I did lots of searching with no results and seriously never wanted another bird.  Nine days later, late one evening my brother called me.  He is our county's Game Warden and he had received a call from the area where we trapped my bird.  Someone had spotted a hawk with something tied to it on an electric pole in the area and called him to report it.  This area is 15 miles as the crow flies from our house.  Thinking there was absolutely no way it could be her after that amount of time, my husband and brother headed up early the next morning  to look.  By some miracle, there she was sitting in the exact spot where we first trapped her, leash and all.  My husband called her to him with little hope that she would come.  She did make a move towards him but thought better of it and landed in a tree.  The leash caught in the tree and she ended up dangling there, out of reach.  I can't imagine that this bird made it nine days without getting that leash caught and then did it just at the right moment!  A little quick work with a chainsaw and a few members of the local volunteer fire department and I had my bird back home.  She was in good shape and none the worse for wear.  We picked right back up where we left off in training.  However, this was a hard lesson I will never forget!

Funniest falconry story?  

This year we headed out to trap a second Redtail.  My husband and I spent many long hours together in a truck with only our bait rat for company.  We had a favorite spot along a pipeline being put in along the north border of our county.  The pipeline work attracted lots of raptors and was usually a good spot to look.   We put the rat and his trap out on the side of a road and drove off a distance to watch.  We watched as a truck filled with pipeline workers drove by and stopped at our trap.  One guy gets out and actually picked up the trap and they start to drive off with it!  We fly down the road to catch them and after a few exchanges of words manage to get poor Domino (yes he got a name) back.  I can't imagine why someone would steal a rat, but each to his own.  After trapping season, I did manage to find someone who would adopt Domino but wanted him neutered.  So, I neutered the rat and he is living happily in his new home.

Favorite quote?  

Fly hard, kill swiftly, make no apologies.   It's an oldie but still rings true.

What is the best tip that you would give someone new to the sport?  

Never give up and be darn sure you know what you are getting yourself into!

Who have you sponsored?  


What goals do you have for your falconry experience?  

Learn as much as I can, See as much as I can, and go as many places as I can with the best falconers I can get to know.

Contact Info you want public?  

email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Social Networks?  

Facebook, Instagram


Featured Member

January, 2018

Bob Clark

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Featured Raptor

January, 2018


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