Meet the 2002 Whooping Crane Chicks!
Hatch-year 2002 of the Eastern Flock

Crane # 202

Date Hatched

April 16 , 2002



Pre-migratory Weight: 6.0 kg

Permanent Leg Bands


  • Read about the naming system, hatch place in Maryland, release site in Wisconsin, over-wintering site in Florida, and leg-band codes.


Personality and History (Scroll to bottom for current news)

Personality Characteristics: With "a bit more spunk," she causes trouble on her own at times. Quite bonded to the costumes and often picks on the crane handlers wearing them. Cautious and slow to come out of the pen for training and flying.


Fall 2002: Successfully completed ultralight-led migration with her Class of 2002.

Spring 2003: Left Chassahowitzka NWR on first journey north April 1, 2003 with 14 other whoopers and returned successfully to Wisconsin April 13. Spent the 2003 summer about 15 miles from Necedah NWR with flock mates 217, 211, 212, 213 and 216.

Fall 2003: Together with #213, started her fall migration from Necedah on November 7. Arrived with #213 in Suwanee County, FL on Nov. 21, where the pair stayed.

Spring 2004: Crane #202 (with #213) likely began their spring journey together on March 20, as PTT readings indicate they spent that night in east-central Georgia. From March 24 - 29, PTT readings indicated they were in Jackson County, IN. Confirmed April 2 (with #213) in Tipecanoe County, Indiana. Seen April 6 in Dane County, WI and confirmed back home at Necedah NWR on April 7.

Fall 2004: Remained at or near Necedah NWR until Nov. 28, when she left with Crane #101. The two remained with large numbers of sandhill cranes in frozen, flooded farm fields in Jasper County, Indiana, until December 16. On that afternoon they moved to nearby Jasper-Pulaski SWFA. They resumed migration Dec. 17. On December 18 they were tracked to roost with approximately 100 sandhills in Monroe County, Kentucky. They completed their southward migration on December 20, arriving in Pasco County, FL. This is the same wintering location #101 used during the previous two winters (2003-04, 2002-03). Shows possible pairing behavior with #101.

Crane #202 on her nest. (Through a telescope)
Photo WCEP

Spring 2005: The pair #101 and #202 left their FL winter location on either March 12 or 13. Confirmed back at Necedah NWR in WI by March 29. They established a territory on the refuge.They remained on their territory except on April 15, when they spent much of the day away. On April 16 crane #202 was sitting as if incubating in the marsh southeast of the pen at Site 4 on the refuge. On April 17 the two birds left and spent the day south of the refuge. A check of the nest site indicated that one egg had been laid, but it had apparently been destroyed during the previous night (quite common in first-time breeders). The pair came back again to the refuge on April 21. No more nesting, no chicks.

Fall 2005: Breeding pair #202 and #101 began migration November 17 along with #208. On Nov. 30, #202 and her mate #101 returned to the same Citrus County, Florida area where they wintered at last year. Home!

Spring 2006: #202 (and mate #101) left on migration from Citrus County, FL on March 12. They arrived at Wisconsin's Necedah NWR on March 18, where they settled on their old territory. They began incubating on April 7, but on April 16 the eggs were lost to a predator. Again, no successful nesting.

Fall 2006: #202 and mate 101 began migration from their Wisconsin territory on November 11. They made it to northeastern Illinois on day 1. The pair resumed migration on November 12 and continued with sandhill cranes to Jasper-Pulaski SFWA, Indiana. Arrived Citrus County, FL on Nov. 23!

Spring 2007: Reported entering Georgia on migration with her mate (#101) on March 13. Her mate was confirmed back at Necedah NWR on March 26, but without #202. No signals were heard for #202, and her status is unknown. The team is presuming that she has died.

Fall 2007: No sign or news of #202.

February, 2008: The WCEP team officially removed #202 from the total in the population of the new Eastern flock. Her body has never been found, but she is assumed to be dead.


Last updated: 2/28/08

Back to "Meet the Flock 2002"


Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure made possible by the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).