“I've been hunting with eagles for 11... 12 years now. In my opinion, the first thing an eagle hunter has to do is get to know the bird you are training. And the most important thing is to always care for her, and rub her, and find ways to come closer to her.”

- Kairatkhan talking about his eagle

Living in the mountainous region of extreme western Mongolia, Khairatkhan Sernedan has been training and hunting with eagles for most of his adult life. He is an ethnic Kazak living as a minority in Khalk Mongol dominated Mongolia. A father of five, Kairatkhan lives as a herder of his flock of about 100 domestic animals including sheep, goats, and horses. He grazes his animals on fence free pastures just as people in this region of the world have been doing for thousands and thousands of years.

Late fall and winter is the prime hunting season when the quarry’s fur is at its thickest. Summer is spent fattening the livestock on distant verdant pastures, and making all the milk products that will nourish the family throughout Mongolia’s brutal winter in which temperatures routinely dip below -40C.

In addition to hunting with eagles, Kairatkhan enjoys horseback riding, playing the dombora (Kazak two string “guitar”), freestyle “akhun” singing, and spending time with his children.