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Objects and Constitution of the Hawk Board

 

Objects

The Objects of the Hawk Board are:

  • To liaise between keepers of Birds of Prey (Falconiformes and Strigiformes), hereinafter referred to as `hawks`, the UK Government and other bodies, in the interests of the hawks and keepers and to advise on and promote good practice and sustainability.

  • To encourage those who keep hawks to adhere to appropriate Welfare Guidelines and Codes of Conduct, and to demand increasingly high standards of husbandry and conservation in aviculture, breeding, sport, education, display, and bird control.

  • To work with partner organisations to develop and maintain national competency and associated husbandry materials.
     

Code of conduct of the Hawk Board

This Code sets out the general standards of the Hawk Board which Clubs, organisations, sub-groups, and their members affiliated to the Board, are expected to abide by:

1. Affiliated Clubs, organisations, sub-groups and their members must uphold the highest standards of welfare, housing and feeding of hawks. The hawk’s welfare must over-ride all other considerations.

2. Affiliated Clubs, organisations sub-groups and their members must always endeavour to promote the welfare and survival of hawks in the wild state, taking into account all environmental issues.

3. Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members should not obtain any hawk either for flying, display, or breeding unless they are able to dedicate sufficient time and resource each day to ensure the hawks welfare.

4. Affiliated Clubs, organisations, sub-groups and their members who fly hawks at quarry should always show due respect for that quarry and ensure that it is promptly and humanely dispatched when caught.

5. Affiliated Clubs, organisations, sub-groups and their members must respect the Hawk Board recommendations and guidelines when approaching landowners with a view to obtaining hawking permission; giving displays either static or flying; providing educational experiences; undertaking bird  control; or any other activities making use of hawks.

6. Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members are under an obligation to observe the laws and customs of the United Kingdom and of foreign countries with regard to the taking, possession, import and export of hawks, the taking of quarry species and the right of access to land. The Board fully supports the work of government agencies involved in the investigation and prosecution of individuals who may be guilty of criminal offences involving either domestic and/or wild hawks.

7. Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members are recommended to refer all requests from the press to either the Hawk Board or experienced members of the hawk keeping fraternity. Unwise publicity can bring legitimate activities into disrepute and may embarrass the Board’s relations with Government, welfare and conservation organizations. Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members should be aware that internet forums and chat rooms are not secure and may cover subjects prohibited in this code.

8. Members of affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members who have good reason to believe that another affiliate or member is in breach of this code of conduct shall report the matter in writing in the first instance to their organisations’ Secretary or other committee member, or the Hawk Board Co-ordinator. In due course the representative or the Co-ordinator and/or Chairman will report that matter to the Board and detail what action has been/is to be taken. Where the law has been broken all are reminded that they have a duty to report such occurrences to the appropriate authorities.

9. ​Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members will refrain from pursuing actions or behaving in such a manner that might be considered injurious to the Hawk Board, its’ representatives and their reputation.

Constitution

The Hawk Board shall consist of:

  • Six elected specialist members.

  • One representative from each of the Sustainable Users Network, British & Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA), the Countryside Alliance, the Scottish Hawk Board.

  • One representative from each of the affiliated Clubs.

  • The Chairs of Standing Committees.

  • Co-opted members (no entitlement to vote).

  • Invited representatives (no entitlement to vote).

 

Additional members may be co-opted to the Board as circumstances demand.

The Chair shall be elected by members of the Board from amongst their own number.

A Vice Chair(s) shall be elected by members of the Board of the Board from amongst their own number and will preside over meetings in the absence of the Chair.

A Secretary, Treasurer and Co-ordinator may be appointed by the Board under agreed terms and conditions.

A person is not eligible for Board membership or to sit on the Board if he or she is opposed to raptor keeping, breeding or falconry, or is a member or supporter of, or affiliated to any organisation which is opposed to the Board’s legitimate activities.

A member of the Board awaiting the decision of a Court of Law for an offence relating to raptors or who is subject to any criminal warrant or charge concerning raptors under any jurisdiction, shall be suspended and if so convicted shall be dismissed from the Board for the duration demanded by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

If a member of the Board or his/her appointee is unreasonably absent from scheduled meetings of  the Board, they can be required to vacate their seat on resolution to that effect by a majority vote.

Meetings

  • Ordinary meetings of the Board shall be held twice yearly or more often as circumstances demand.

  • Eight members of the Board shall form a quorum

  • An Extraordinary Meeting may be called with the support of a minimum of nine voting members of the Board of the Board - it will be held within six weeks of notification to the secretary, detailing stating the business to form the agenda and members supporting the call.

 

Voting

  • Each member the Board shall be entitled to a single vote.

  • In the event of tied votes the Chair shall have a casting vote.

  • Invited representatives and Co-opted Board members have no entitlement to vote
     

Elections

Elections to the Board will be held every four years by postal or electronic ballot. The six specialist members shall be nominated and elected by the members of Affiliated Clubs, organisations or sub-groups of the Board.

All Board members, whether elected or appointed shall serve for a period of four years and shall be eligible for re-election or re-appointment at the end of their term of office.

Affiliation to the Hawk Board

Falconry, hawking, breeding, rehabilitation, aviculture and other Bird of Prey Clubs and organisations located in the United Kingdom are eligible to affiliate providing they comply with the Boards’ published requirements for affiliation and have been so elected at a Board meeting:

All Clubs affiliated to the Board are entitled to:

  1. representation on the Board

  2. a copy of Minutes of each full meeting of the Board

  3. representation at meetings and events organised by the Board

  4. support, advice and advocacy where appropriate, with Government departments, legislative, conservation and other groups concerning raptor keeping, welfare and legislation

  5. advice on publicity and media engagement

 

Membership (beyond affiliation)
Bird of Prey professionals be they breeders, educators, rehabilitators, aviculturists, display givers, bird  controllers, falconry furniture makers or others, can on payment of a subscription and submission of a signed declaration (as supplied by the Board) adhering to the objects herein, can become individual members of the Raptor Professionals sub-group of the Board.

Individuals who are not affiliated Club members can on payment of a subscription and submission of a signed declaration (as supplied by the Board) adhering to the objects herein, can become individual members of the Membership sub-group of the Board.

Subscription payment for these categories of membership will be annually and submitted electronically to the Board Treasurer.

 

Obligations

Clubs, organisations or sub-groups and their members affiliated to the Board must strive to uphold the laws and conventions of the United Kingdom.

Any Club, organisation or sub-group affiliated to the Board that, knowingly accepts as a member or allows to remain as a member, any person convicted of offence under wildlife legislation in any jurisdiction, within 5 years of the conviction for the offence may be subject to expulsion.

 

Committees

The Hawk Board may form standing committees if and when required. Such an action may only take place at a full meeting of the Board of the Board when it must appear as an agenda item duly notified to the Board members. Each committee so formed will have a function specified by the Board and an agreed remit recorded in the minutes.

The members of the standing committees shall be drawn from members of the Board, members of affiliated Clubs or those with specific expertise.

The standing committee will appoint a Chair from within its own number. The internal structure of the sub-committee will be at the discretion of its members.

The members of all standing committee will be reviewed by the Board of the Board annually.

The standing committee will report to the Board at its meetings. A written summary of the standing committees work is to be submitted annually.

Standing committees can be dissolved and their work terminated by a majority vote of the Board.

There will be a standing committee to manage the Boards fund raising and awareness activities.

 

Finance

Each affiliated membership based Club, organisation or body shall pay an annual levy to the Board calculated on the number of subscribing UK members whose membership status allows them to keep hawks, at a per capita rate determined by the Board of the Board. Numbers are taken at 30th April each year. This levy is payable on or before 31st July each year.

Each non-membership based organisation shall pay an annual subscription to the Board. The subscription rate shall be determined by the Board of the Board. This subscription is payable on or before 31st July each year.

The Board has power to vary the rate of the annual levy or subscription.

New Clubs wishing to become affiliated during the course of the Board year which ends 31st March, shall pay the fee pro rata.

Failure to pay the annual levy by the stated date will result in:-

  • Suspension of the Club, organisation or sub-groups representative(s) from Board meetings until Payment is made in full.

  • Cancellation of affiliation status on the following 31st October if payment has not been made by that date.
     

Bird of Prey Professionals will pay electronically, an annual subscription, determined by the Board and falling due on or before 31st July each year. Cancellation of membership status occurs on the 31st October of that year if payment has not been made by that date.

Individual members will pay electronically, an annual subscription, determined by the Board, and falling due on or before 31st July each year. Cancellation of membership status occurs on the 31st October of that year if payment has not been made by that date.


 

Other matters Financial

All expenditure is to be agreed by the Board in advance.

 

Reasonable expenses will be considered for Elected Board Members and Co-opted Members of the Board.

 

In addition to income from subscriptions the Board may generate further income from the provision of goods and services, and through fund raising activities as approved by the Board from time to time.

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