Personality and History
Migration Training: She worried the trainers at first because she ate and drank water all the time on her own but didn't gain weight or stay properly hydrated. Then she got better. Started circle pen training on June 3, same day as #509. Arrived in Wisconsin on July 6 with the rest of cohort 2. Chicks #509 and #510 needed a little extra coaxing to come out of the new pen on their first day of training after they arrived in Wisconsin, but soon improved. She's a submissive little girl.
Aug. 5, this cohort had nothing but confusion and chaos during
session. But on Aug. 6, all of the birds stayed on or really near
the runway when
except for #510. The costumed handlers had had to retrieve her
from a pool right by
out easily and quickly when the they found her.
She is a good flyer, but she can have trouble coming in and out of the pen. She is buddies with #50 and #512.
On Day 5, #510 must have wanted a day off from migration. She had to be coaxed out of the pen by Walt, who quickly snuck back into the pen trailer to grab the "swamp monster" cape. With a little help from the scary swamp monster, she charged out of the pen and was soon airborne with Richard and his ultralight!
She landed safely with the flock at the temporary holding site at Halpata Preserve in Marion County, FL on December 13. The cranes will be moved to their final release pen in mid-January after all the older cranes have dispersed from the pen site.
January 10, Crane #510 made it to the final pen site at
Chassahowitzka NWR on day 2 of the pilots' attempts to
move the flock. The birds slowly became
familiar with the idea of again following the ultralight
after a month's vacation. Richard and Brooke managed to
get #510 and 5 other birds far enough from the pen that
they fell into line and followed the 26 miles. HOME for
Spring 2006: Began first spring migration from the "Chass" pen site March 28 with all flock members except 520. This flock of 18 split at roost time on March 28, and fourteen juveniles (501, 502, 503, 505, 506, 507, 508, 509, 510, 512, 514, 519, 523, and 524) stayed together. They probably roosted near the confluence of Turner, Crisp and Wilcox Counties in Georgia. They didn't move the next day. On March 30 they resumed migration and roosted in Hamilton County, TN. The next roosting place was March 31 in Spence County, KY; April 1 in Jefferson County, IN; April 2 and 3 in DuPage County, IL; April 4 in McHenry County, IL. (past Chicago). They are determined to get back to Wisconsin! They flew two days in rain, and in stong headwinds on April 4. On April 5 they resumed migration, stopping in Sauk County, WI—just short of Necedah NWR! Tracker Richard Urbanek was monitoring them the morning of April 6 when they took off. They completed spring migration as they passed the SW corner of Necedah NWR just after noon. (They kept going! They landed, foraged, and roosted that night in nearby Trempealeau County, WI.)
Fall 2006: #510 (along with 511, 512, 519 and 307) began migration from Wisconsin's Necedah NW on November 9 and made it to northern Illinois that night. No further reports until January 2, when they were found in Levy County, FL!
Spring 2007: Began migration from Florida's Alachua County on March 27 with #511 and #512. They arrived together at Necedah NWR, on April 1. On July 17 her body was dicoverered in a small wet area of an otherwise dry wetland. She was molting and couldn't fly. Without water to keep predators from reaching her, the flightless crane was killed. Her death was likely around July 7. (Her mate was still in the area, but he often separated from her after she began molting.)
Last updated: 7/23/07
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