to Crane Navigation:
#309 seems to think
it’s her personal mission to visit all of these states as an ambassador
for the Whooping
Crane Eastern Partnership,” jokes Joe Duff. (Joe,
who is ultralight pilot and Project Leader for Operation Migration, has
led every group of new crane chicks on their first journey south since the
experimental project began in 2001.)
What Can We Learn from Crane 309?
does Joe mean by that? Here's #309's
309 has never returned to Wisconsin since the day she left the state
following the ultralight back in 2003.
- On her
first return migration, she and eight flockmates were flushed from their
roost by curious people. They took off into the darkness. That, plus
a strong west wind, pushed them to the east side of Lake Michigan.
a summer in Michigan, she wintered in North Carolina. (First she made
a brief visit to South Carolina.)
- In spring
2005, she dropped in on Ohio and New York before crossing the border
into Ontario. Next she was seen in central Vermont.
- On Dec.
9, 2005 she was found on a farm in Beaufort County, North Carolina.
Luckily, she stayed long enough to be captured on Dec. 16, 2005.
captured, and moved to Florida!
wary bird eventually got close enough to Sara and her corn so Sara
could grab her and push her into a crate. They replaced her non-working
radio transmitter. Next, they released her
in a cattle pasture in Madison County, Florida along with yearling
females #419 and #420.
Richard Urbanek, USFWS.)
and print out a large map. Trace #309's travels!
is Richard van Heuvelen (OM),
Sara Zimorski (ICF),
and Crane #309.
Scientists have evidence that the WCEP ultralight-led cranes seldom wander
much farther north than the area where they learned to fly: at Necedah
National Wildlife Refuge in central Wisconsin. Or DO they . . .?
1. Click on the above map and print it out.
2. Locate and mark Necedah
3. Mark the states and provinces where we said #309 traveled in her 2004
and 2005 journeys north.
4. Compare your map with this labeled
map of the northern journeys of #309 and her buddy. Then answer these
Why do you
think #309 may have wandered so much?
you think she has some knowledge of her latitude? Explain your response.
looking at #309’s wanderings, what questions or ideas do you
have about cranes' ability to navigate?