Report a Poacher or Other Violation

Non-emergency Dangerous Wildlife Complaints

More information on
Dangerous Wildlife Complaints

For more information on
hunting, please contact the
WDFW Wildlife Program.
Phone: 360-902-2515




Reporting Requirements

All acquisitions, captures, purchases, gifting, sales, transfers releases, banding, escapes, losses by death, and all other changes in status and possession of falconry birds MUST be reported to the USFWS by online filing of Form 3-186A.

Casting off an eagle – for Master Falconers with special permission only

Casting off an eagle – for Master Falconers with special permission only
Photo courtesy of Brian and Linda Kellogg

Washington Falconer's Association
The North American Falconers Association (NAFA)

Classes of Falconers

Apprentice Falconer

  • At least two years with a General or Master Falconer
  • May possess only one raptor at a time;
  • May take only an American Kestrel or Red-tailed hawk from the wild; May possess another species of raptor (with exceptions) if it is transferred or captive bred
  • Extensive literature study, field study, and hunting with the sponsor;

General Falconer

After at least two years of satisfactory apprenticeship, providing you are 16 years or older, you may apply to be a General Falconer. This application must be signed by a General or Master falconer who sponsors the upgrade and a document submitted by this person verifying experience and training.

  • May possess up to three birds at one time;
  • Several species of raptors as specified in WAC 232-30-152 may be taken from the wild;
  • May sponsor an Apprentice Falconer after two years of experience at the General class level

Master Falconer

A Master Falconer must have at least five years experience as a General Falconer and show expertise in successful hunting and care of their birds, and experience with more than one species of raptor.

  • May possess up to five wild-caught raptors including golden eagles;
  • May possess an unlimited number of captive-bred raptors for falconry purposes.

All falconers must report the capture, procurement, transfer, or disposition of birds at the time of the action using Federal Form 3-186-A. Some species of birds must be banded by the State and captive bred birds, such as Harris’ hawks and peregrine falcons, must wear captive-bred bands.

You should plan on joining the two falconry associations - the Washington Falconers Association and the North American Falconers Association especially during your apprenticeship period.

Falconry and Wildlife Rehabilitation

Sometimes falconers are asked to care for injured raptors, or condition them for release after their stay at a licensed rehabilitator.  Falconers are experts at caring for, housing, and exercising raptors and are valuable in aiding licensed rehabilitators by taking over care of the bird.

Falconers Moving to Washington State

If a falconer with a current valid falconry permit issued by another state, territory, or tribe moves to Washington, he or she must notify the WDFW and apply for a Washington State Falconry Permit after 90 days of residency of the intent to apply for a permit. With this notification, the falconer may continue to hold all raptors legally held before the move. The WDFW will most likely issue the same class of permit as currently held in another state.