How Long Will They Stay?

Crane #7-14 preening
Preening feathers to keep them in top condition is a daily job for cranes.
Brooke Pennypacker, Operation Migration

March 14, 2016

After the fall migration delays, the six young cranes in the Class of 2015 have been on their wintering grounds only since Feb. 6. How long will they stay before they head north?

It's anyone's guess, but last year the first juvenile left on March 11 with two older, experienced cranes as her guides. The other youngsters waited until April 3.

Suspense runs high again this spring because the young cranes arrived so late, and the weather has been warmer than usual.

How long do aircraft-led cranes usually stay on their wintering grounds before heading north? How do they get ready for spring's journey north?