Whooping Cranes – Chasshowitzka National Wildlife Refuge

This year’s flock of young Whooping Cranes have made it to Chasshowitzka National Wildlife Refuge. Their journey was tough and long – 96 days.

The following photos are from Mark Chenoweth, creator of Whooper Happenings, your source for podcasts full of information about Whooping Cranes.

Whooping Cranes Ultralight
Chris Gullikson guiding a dozen cranes to the Halpata-Tastanaki Reserve

Whooping Cranes Ultralight Flight
Richard van Heuvelen leading three Whooper chicks

The hard work and dedication in Whooping Crane conservation would not be possible without dedicated volunteers and support of wonderful organizations like Operation Migration. Consider helping out the project with a donation to Operation Migration.

Photos courtesy of Mark Chenoweth

6 thoughts on “Whooping Cranes – Chasshowitzka National Wildlife Refuge

  1. Nina – definitely looks like a blast!!

    Lana – you are welcome; the Whoopers are a great success story

    Larry – seems to work very well too!!

  2. There’s a special breeding program for Whoopers here in New Orleans at the Audubon Zoo, too. Always nice to see the good that’s being done for these wonderful birds.

  3. There were 16 (of the 17) Whooping crane chicks flying Sunday, 1/27 over the Dunnellon Airport in Florida. The next morning they flew the 26 miles to their winter home at Chassahowitzka NWR. This is the 7th year that Operation Migration and its WCEP (Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership) allies, including USFWS and ICF, have worked to raise and train young Whooper chicks. They are hatched at Patuxent, trained at Necedah NWR in Wisconsin, and then guided by ultralights the 1260+ miles from Wisconsin to Florida. This trip was the longest ever taking 97 days! The shortest was the first year (2001) at 48 days. The chicks will return without guidance on their own in a few months, most making the flight to Wisconsin in about a week or less! Weather was the problem, as winds and gusty conditions as well as rain grounded the team many days. Some changes in the migration route this spring may help to avoid some of the severe weather conditions they have encountered in the past few years. The trip has taken about 2 months on the average. After the tragic loss of the entire Class of 2006 almost exactly a year ago, there are now about 75 Whooping cranes in the Eastern Introduced Migratory Flock.

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