Crane Migration Update: April 21, 2006
Today's Report Includes:
good day for migrating!
The migration of the Western Flock from Texas to Canada is in full swing.
None has reached the nesting grounds yet, but only 12 remain in Texas.
In news from the Eastern flock, two more crane-kids completed migration,
and a fifth nest with eggs was discovered! Three older cranes—two
in previously unknown locations and one with an injury—are also home
Read on for photos, your Challenge Question, more details and fun!
Eastern Flock Field Notes: Everybirdy's Busy
4:00 PM April 19, the radio signals #511 and #521 were detected
over Necedah NWR. These youngsters, not tracked since March
30, had just completed their first spring migration!
In more good news, two of the three Eastern cranes whose locations were unknown
were seen Tuesday in Adams County, Wisconsin. They are 5-year-old females #102
and #107. And guess who else came home? Male #216, the missing mate of #303,
flew from Minnesota back to his Wisconsin territory on April 18! That's the good
also not-so-good news about crane #216. He appears to be injured.
Read details and consider what might be next for him:
#216 Comes Home, But What Lies Ahead?On April 14 the
Eastern flock's fifth nest of the season was found! Crane
pair #209 and #302 is sitting on a nest in their Monroe
County territory, not far from the core area at Necedah
NWR. Everyone continues to wait and hope for the flock's
very first chicks to be hatched!
5th nest is here!
Photo Richard Urbanek, ICF, USFSW
Challenge Question #10: The Case of the Missing Eggs
up with the nests we reported last week? On April 16 both
members of whooping crane pair #101 and #202 were seen
foraging together. Ditto for pair #317-#203. Why was this
a tip-off to trouble? With the cranes away, experts from
the crane team were able to check the nests. What did they
human babies, whooping crane eggs don't come with instructions.
What mistakes might they make, and what lessons might
they learn? See:
Challenge Question #10:
crane pair that nested in 2005 and 2006 has not yet learned how to
keep eggs safe? Based on your work in Nesting Errors: Learning
from Mistakes, why do you think they're having trouble keeping
to this question, please follow these instructions.
NOTE: Sara Zimorski told us the remaining 3 crane pairs are doing
well so far, sitting tight and being very attentive to their nest/egg(s).
Taking Inventory: Where Are the Crane Kids?
Just 3 of the ultralight-led chicks haven't made it back
yet. But chick #520, led astray by wandering adult #309,
be back where
he belongs. Since last week's report the two have wandered
into Ontario, Canada and
back into New York. Crane Team member Sara reports that
the team is
working on plans to go catch #520 and #309 in NY, maybe
early next week. If captured,
the two wayward cranes will be brought back to their
Wisconsin summer home. In updating #520's migration map, Journey
Mary exclaimed, “Oh,
it is so fun to make maps! Look where that #520 has gone!”
The survival story continues for reach of the flock's
64 cranes. Here's the latest on the migration status
(DAR) chicks and the older birds of the Eastern Flock:
Western Flock Almost Gone: Tom Stehn Reports
big push-off of cranes heading north has occurred right on
schedule. And why not? The weather in Texas has been windy
and warm all week, perfect conditions to help the cranes migrate,” says
Tom. Since last week’s count, how many have headed north
to Canada? As in most years, all the adults were gone by April
20.That leaves just 12 birds. What do they all have in common?
Why does it happen that way? See Tom’s full report, and
also look for Tom’s idea of the very special talents
of young cranes and YOU! It's here:
Deadwood, SD had six feet of snow yesterday. Is that on the cranes’ migration
route? How might large amounts of snow affect migrating cranes? Are you keeping
track of the temperatures on the nesting grounds as the cranes head toward their
Western Flock Nears Nesting Grounds: Brian Johns Reports
Brian Johns is on duty, awaiting the first whooping crane arrivals
to the vast wilderness of Canada’s Wood
Buffalo National Park for another breeding season. North
winds made it a poor week for migration; just one new report
came in. This pair of cranes is 2 or 3 days flying distance from
the breeding grounds, and the migrants reported a week ago should
be arriving this week. Why was yesterday a good day for migration?
How far can the cranes fly in a day? Brian tells you in his full
report. He also reminds us that whooping cranes will be performing
their magnificent courtship dance as they pass through the Canadian
Prairies. The video is here, in Brian’s full report:
the Eastern Flock’s FIRST Chicks Hatch? Discussion
of CQ #9
Last week we celebrated that four pairs from the new Eastern flock
were sitting on eggs. We asked:
“ When will the chicks hatch for these 4 whooping crane pairs?"
Pair 101 and 202: began incubating April 7
Pair 213 and 218: began incubating April 6
Pair 203 and 317: began incubating April 7
Pair 211 and 217: began incubating April 11
Students from Vermont’s Ferrisburgh Central and homeschooler Marcus
all came up with the same hatch dates. Here are their answers,
plus something else to consider about eggs laid in the wild compared to
Crane Migration Update Will Be Posted on April 28, 2006.
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