Duff, Canadian Co-founder of Operation
Migration (O.M.). Joe is Team
Leader, CEO and senior pilot of O.M, the WCEP partner that
leads the ultralight migration. His daughter Alex is 8 years
old. Joe was
a well-known photographer before
an ultralight pilot and leader in saving endangered species.
van Heuvelen, Operation Migration (O.M.) pilot. Richard
led the ground crew for the 2001 migration and
filled in as back-up pilot. Since 2002 he's been a team pilot.
A Canadian, he has four daughters: Megan, Sara, Katie and
is also a master sculptor. Joe Duff
says of Richard: "If anything is broken he can fix it and
if it doesn't exist he can create it."
Pennypacker, Operation Migration pilot since 2002. Brooke
has a great sense of humor and a son named
Devin. Brooke once built a raft to drift down the Mississippi
while reading Huckleberry Finn. He is also a skilled
diver and worked on the oil rigs off the coast of Scotland.
clip of Brooke's Greeting to You
Migration pilot since 2005.
Chris is an experienced trike instructor and
natural way with birds. He
runs storm watch tours on the side so he is the team's
weather consultant. Read about his
first flight with the cranes when he became an Operation Migration
pilot in 2005.
Paulan is O.M.'s Supervisor
of Field Operations. She is known as "Chick Mama" because
she is involved with each year's chicks from hatch to
is from Antioch, IL. Bev is also a pilot. She had her
as a teacher at
a wildlife rehabilitation center. Hear
Bev tell the hardest
part of wearing the costume.
Audio clips courtesy
Mark Chenoweth of Whooper
Shafer, former O.M. Intern, now works full time at Patuxent
WRC where the chicks hatch. He has a degree in biology and
helps as a crane handler in summer at Necedah.
is involved with each year’s chicks
from hatch in Maryland to release in Florida after migration.
served on the ground crew as a tracker but left the migration
Nov. 9 to return to his duties at Patuxent.
Intern, loves being with the birds. (She can talk to ducks!) Megan
was a 4-H member for 7 years. Her degree from UW Madison is
in poultry science. She knows a lot about environmental science and
wildlife ecology. Her goal is to work to save wild species.
is also a musician. She played percussion and balalaika
with the University of Wisconsin Russian Folk Orchestra.
Hurst joined O.M. as an Intern after getting a degree Wildlife
Ecology from the University of Wisconsin. Nathan says "There's
nothing like being with the birds and seeing them grow and
learn to fly."
is from Stevens
WI. He has been interested in the birds around his
family home since
he was a boy. Now he likes Ultimate Frisbee—and, of course, Whooping
Sturgeon has 30 years of experience handling cranes. He is
a welcome volunteer with the ground crew ! Walt is
retired Assistant Director of the North Carolina State Museum
of Natural Sciences.
Matt Ahrens filled in for Joe for part of
the migration. Matt started
out in Tennessee, flew a complete
series of flights over Georgia, and finished in Florida. The
team loved his great spirit and great cooking!
Don and Paula Lounsbury volunteer as top-cover pilots for
Operation Migration. Their dog comes along too! They
keep in touch with air traffic control AND all the ultralight
pilots during each leg of the flight.