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Hatch Year 2004 Juveniles
First Journey North
(Spring 2005)

Migration Chronology: Most recent reports at the top. Colors match their routes on the migration map.

May 16, 2005: Migration Complete!
(For more, see biographies.)

Group 3 (#418): Migration complete! Crane #418 left his stop in Dodge County, WI and flew several hours of undirected flight. He flew over an area including Necedah NWR, Valley Junction, and Mill Bluff—and made at least three brief landings. He finally landed on southwestern East Rynearson Pool, where he remained to roost. All HY2004 chicks are safely home at last!

May 11, 2005

Group 3 (#418): He was observed with a Sandhill Crane in one of several large, old topsoil excavation impoundments (no public access) in southeastern Wisconsin. Close, but not yet home.

May 10, 2005

Group 3 (#418): Crane #418 landed in Wisconsin! He left a stop in Washington Park in metro-Chicago, Cook County, Illinois and migrated to Washington County, WI.

May 8, 2005

Group 3 (#418): According to PTT readings, #418 remained in northern Indiana until May 8. On May 8, he moved to northern Illinois where he remained for two days.

 

May 3, 2005

Group 1A: Migration complete! Cranes #402, 403, 415, 416, 417, 419, and 420 arrived at Necedah NWR today! They left the area, however, and eventually formed two groups. As typical for subadults, they are wandering and not settling down.
Group 3 (#418): Most recent PTT readings indicated that #418 had moved to
north-central Indiana (Fulton County) on the night of 28 April and then stayed at that location for the remainder of the week.

25 April

Group 1A: Still in Dane County, WI, south of Necedah.
Group 1B: Finally left Winnebago County, Illinois and migrated north to Adams County in central Wisconsin---just 27 miles from Necedah NWR!
Group 3 (#418): Location of #418 was unknown today, but he was last detected yesterday morning (24 April) still in Scott County, Indiana.

22 April

Group 1A: Remained in Dane and Sauk County south of Necedah.
Group 1B: Cranes #401, 407, 408 and 414 remained in Winnebago County, Illinois. They foraged in cornfields on both sides of the Illinois-Wisconsin state line.
Group 3 (#418): A high-precision PTT reading indicated that he roosted in Scott County, Indiana, on the night of 22 April.

19 April

Group 1A: Remained in Dane and Sauk County south of Necedah.
Group 1B: Cranes #401, 407, 408 and 414 remained in Winnebago County, IL
Group 3 (#418): PTT data put #418 in Forsyth Co., GA. on April 19. Go, Crane #418! Last to leave, he likely began migration from his Pasco County, FL wintering site on April 18. He had been either alone or with single or paired nonmigratory sandhill cranes after the whooping cranes left. He DOES know the route back to Wisconsin.

14 April
Group 1A: Remained in Dane and Sauk County south of Necedah.
Group 1B: Lara Fondow located the group of 4 (#401, 407, 408 and 414) during an aerial search in Winnebago County, Illinois. They were in a harvested cornfield 1 mile south of the Wisconsin border. Their whereabouts had been unrecorded since they left Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin, on April 7.

8 April
Group 1A: Remained in Dane and Sauk County south of Necedah.
Group 1B: The four (#401, 407, 408 and 414) were in Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin. When checked by aircraft later in the fternoon, they had left the area.

7 April
Group 1A: #402, 403, 415, 416, 417, 419, and 420 stayed in Dane County the rest of the week.
Group 1B: The four (#401, 407, 408 and 414) were in Dodge County, Wisconsin/Horicon NWR.
Group 2: #412 is FIRST TO REACH HOME! Still together, #314, #311, and chick #412 left their roost site in Sauk County, Wisconsin and made the short flight to Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in mid afternoon. Crane #412 becomes the first of his HY2004 flock to officially cross the finish line and make it back to Necedah. He roosted in East Rynearson Pool very close to the training sites that night.

6 April: Group 1 Splits into Group 1A and Group 1B
Group 1A:
Seven cranes (#402, 403, 415, 416, 417, 419, and 420) broke from the group of 11 after leaving Rock County, WI. PTT data indicated the group of 7 roosted in Dane County, WI.

Group 1B: The remaining four cranes (#401, 407, 408, 414) from the group of 11 returned to the previous roost location in Fond du Lac County, WI.

Group 2: Now in WISCONSIN! Migrating together, the new grouping of #314 and #311 with juvenile #412 was tracked into Wisconsin to a Sauk County location.

5 April
Group 1: The group of 11 juveniles resumed migration from a large marsh in Rock County, Wisconsin at about 10 a.m. After encountering cloud cover, they shifted their flightpath northeast. They landed at 1:30 in a wetland in Fond du Lac County, WI.
Group 2: Whooper juvenile #412 found himself alone this morning, as older ultra-cranes #105 and #204 were gone when the site was checked by trackers. The pair apparently left quite early. This behavior of leaving a juvenile behind in the latter stages of spring migration is similar to behavior exhibited by sandhill crane parents. Crane #412 resumed migration alone at 9:25 a.m. While flying over southern Indiana, he joined migrating whooping cranes #304 and #311. Imagine that! The three birds remained together and landed to roost in a wetland located in McHenry County, Illinois, around 6:40 p.m.

4 April
Group 1: BACK IN WISCONSIN! The group of 11 juveniles resumed migration today from a wetland and harvested cornfields in Miami County, Indiana, at 9:25. They landed to roost at a large marsh containing two sandhill cranes in Rock County, WISCONSIN at 6:15 p.m. During the 9-hour flight they covered 200-miles. Almost home!
Group 2: The group composed of chick #412 (with adults #105 and #204)
moved from their roost in a large pond in a pasture in Catoosa County, Georgia at 6:58 a.m. when they flew to a different pasture about 1 mile north. At 9:59 a.m. they took flight and resumed migration. They landed to roost in Perry County, Indiana, at 6:50 p.m, covering just over 240 miles
.

3 April:
Group 1: PTT data that came in over the weekend would indicate they haven't moved since arriving at their north-central Indiana location on March 30th. Considering they logged more than 22 hours of airtime in the two flight days that brought them to their current location, they certainly earned the rest!
Group 2: In spite of 10-15 mph northwesterly winds, crane #412 (still with older ultracranes #105 and 204) resumed migration today from a partially flooded, harvested cornfield east in Mitchell County, Georgia, at about 9:30 a.m. The birds took a brief pit stop in west central Georgia and then resumed flying northward at 6:23 p.m. At 8:09 p.m. they stopped briefly beside a tributary of Spring Creek. They then flew another 2.5 hours before landing at 10:40 p.m. to roost in Catoosa County, Georgia. The day's flight took approximately 13 hours with the final 3 hours in darkness! How could they navigate in darkness? Well, crane #412 was familiar with the area. How can that be? Go back to Day 48 of #412's journey south with the ultralight and you'll see why!)

2 April: No migration progress.

1 April: No migration progress.
31 March: Poor migrating conditions from Indiana to Georgia resulted in no significant progress in migration today.
Group 1: The group of 11 juveniles (nos. 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, and 20) spent the day in a wetland and harvested cornfields in Miami County, Indiana. The group was flushed from the wetland by human activity just before dark and then roosted in a nearby cornfield.
Group 2: Crane #412 (still with older ultra-cranes #105 and #204) moved 15 miles north to Mitchell County, Georgia.

Crane #418 remained at his wintering location on a cattle ranch in Pasco County, Florida. He is the only whooping crane in the eastern flock that has not yet begun migration.
30 March:

Group 1: The group of 11 juveniles resumed migration from Oconee County, South Carolina, at or before 8:00. This was the first day since beginning migration on 25 March that they had optimal migration conditions: tailwind and clear skies. They landed to roost in a wetland adjacent to harvested cornfields along a river in Miami County, Indiana, at about 7:30.
Group 2: Crane #412 left on migration today! Traveling with older ultra-cranes #105 and #204. They made it to Thomas County, Georgia, and no aggression was observed by the older cranes to the younger #412.

29 March: The group of 11 juveniles resumed migration from Evans County, Georgia, at 8:20. They managed to correct course slightly and landed to roost in the Sumter National Forest in Oconee County, South Carolina, at about 7:20.
28 March: The group of 11 juveniles (#401, 402, 403, 407, 408, 414, 415, 416, 417, 419, and 420) resumed migration at 10:45. The flock was blown eastward by 20-25 mph westerly winds. They landed at 5:00 to roost in a pond among farm fields in Evans County, Georgia. They were blown too far east by 20-25 mph WEST winds.
27 March: The group of 11 juveniles (#401, 402, 403, 407, 408, 414, 415, 416, 417, 419, and 420) resumed migration at 8:17 with 10-15 mph southerly winds but under complete overcast. They landed in Dixie County, Florida, at 11:10. They remained to roost in a wetland in a pasture at this site.

  26 March: Heavy showers and thunderstorms kept the cranes grounded.

25 March: Eleven juveniles left the Chassahowitzka pen this morning and proceeded northbound on their first northward migration! (Crane #412 did NOT leave with them.) The juveniles soon ran into heavy showers and thunderstorms. After being grounded at one or more coastal saltmarsh locations for most of the day, they resumed flight in late afternoon. They landed to roost at 4:15 p.m. EST at a pond in a cattle pasture 14 miles north of the Chassahowitzka pen.


The night before their departure from the refuge, the twelve juveniles roosted in saltmarsh about 1 mile west of the pen with adult ultra-cranes #105 and #204. (Crane #418, who didn't migrate south with his ultralight cohort but instead followed older ultra-cranes, was at his chosen wintering site in nearby Pasco County, Florida.)  

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