The falcons, carried by two men, had their own seats and sat quietly blindfolded.
Footage of two men boarding a plane while carrying three falcons has amazed social media users, but the local airline says it is a common practice.
Twitter user @DonnieDoesWorld, the Barstool Sports foreign correspondent, filmed the pair on the flight from Dushanbe in Tajikistan to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Folks two dudes just boarded my plane with emotional support falcons pic.twitter.com/lHABg8A7La
— The Tajikistahn Dahn (@DonnieDoesWorld) March 29, 2019
The cameraman claimed on Twitter that the birds were “emotional support falcons”, animals which are allowed on flights to help people with a mental health condition or emotional disorder.
However airline flydubai, which provided the flight, told the Press Association it is unlikely they were there for such medical reasons and that the carrying of falcons is a common practice.
“Please note that falcons are important to the culture of the UAE and we regularly welcome our feathered friends on board,” a spokesman said.
Falconry is a sign of wealth in many parts of the world. These dudes like to party
— JMACK (@RMcardsfan) March 29, 2019
That last guy must need a lot of support, he has *two* falcons
— Danny Gold (@DGisSERIOUS) March 29, 2019
This is the answer to a riddle: How does a bird fly without flapping its wings?
— Julio Jimenez (@j_jimenez21) March 29, 2019
It seems the falcons are used to the experience too.
“They were very well behaved on the flight,” added @DonnieDoesWorld. “Each had their own seat and sat quietly blindfolded.”