International Crane Foundation


A 2004 Whooping Crane Has Arrived at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge!

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Whooper Reintroduction Updates

Current Trip: Spring 2005 Eastern Whooping Crane Migration
Entry April 13

A 2004 Whooping Crane Has Arrived at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge!

No. 12-04 is the first 2004 Whooping Crane to reach the Necedah NWR!

On April 6, No. 12-04, and adults Nos. 4-03 and 11-03 resumed migration from a wetland in northeastern Illinois. They landed at ~3:45 p.m. in central Wisconsin, where they foraged in harvested cornfields and roosted in adjacent wetlands along the Baraboo River. On April 7, they made a short mid-afternoon flight to Necedah NWR. Upon arrival, No. 12-04 separated from the two older birds. All three birds roosted at Necedah NWR.

On April 6, the group of 11, 2004 juveniles (Nos. 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, and 20) departed from their stopover site in east central Wisconisn. The birds separated into two groups. One group (Nos. 1, 7, 8, and 14) returned to an area that the group had previously used. When a tracker arrived in the mid-afternoon on April 7, these birds had departed to an undetermined location.

The other group of 2004 birds (Nos. 2, 3, 15, 16, 17, 19, and 20) moved to south central Wisconsin where they stayed for the remainder of the week.

No. 18-04 remained on his wintering area on a cattle ranch in Pasco County, Florida. He was either alone or with single or paired nonmigratory Sandhill Cranes. No 18-04 is the bird that was experimentally released on the Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in the fall of 2004. He associated with older Whooping Cranes and then successfully migrated to Florida without the aid of aircraft.

Many thanks to Windway Aviation, pilot Mike Voechting, and trackers
Julia Watson and Lara Fondow (International Crane Foundation), and Richard Urbanek, (US Fish and Wildlife Service).

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