Feeling yarak?

26 03 2015

Just finished the brilliant and strange ‘H is for Hawk’. One thing I loved was the author’s astute use of alien signals like feather carriage to infer her goshawk’s affective state (my words here not hers). I also learnt of an old middle eastern term ‘yarak’, which means the motivation to hunt. It’s related to (but not the same as) physical fitness, related to (but not the same as) hunger, and is a carnivore thing (maybe even just a raptor thing): a state I’m not sure we can really imagine. Fitted right into my talk last week, though I didn’t actually manage to shoe-horn it in.