Whooping Crane Eastern Population Update – July 2021 - International Crane Foundation

International Crane Foundation

 

Whooping Crane Eastern Population Update – July 2021

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Below is the most recent update for the Eastern Migratory Population of Whooping Cranes. In the last month, the nesting season was completed. A huge thank you to the staff of the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Departments of Natural Resources of flyway states, the International Crane Foundation and all the volunteers who help us keep track of the cranes throughout the year. We appreciate your contribution to the recovery of the Whooping Crane Eastern Migratory Population. This report is produced by the International Crane Foundation.

Population Estimate

The current estimated population size is 75 (38 F, 35 M, 2 U). Sixteen of these 75 individuals are wild-hatched and the rest are captive-reared. To the best of our knowledge, as of 1 July, there are at least 66 Whooping Cranes in Wisconsin and two in Michigan. The remaining birds’ locations have not been confirmed in the last month. Their last known locations (in the past month) are on the below map.

Click here to view our interactive “Where are the Whoopers” map for more details, including bios on each of the cranes.

Reproduction

As of 1 July, nesting season is complete. There were at least 21 first nests and 2 renests.

Failed nests since last report: 1 in Marquette County which was incubated full term but did not hatch.

In total, 7 eggs were removed from 6 nests to be raised in captivity.

2021 Wild-hatched Cohort

Chicks listed below in bold are currently alive, as far as we know. Nesting season is complete and there were 14 chicks confirmed to have hatched and up to 6 are still alive.

W2-21 (U) hatched to parents 3-14 and 4-12 in Green Lake County at the beginning of May. W2-21 is still alive as of the end of June.

W6-21 (U) and W7-21 (U) hatched to parents 27-14 and 10-11 in Marquette County. W7-21 disappeared, but W6-21 is still alive as of the end of June.

W8-21 (U) hatched to parents 38-17 and 63-15 at Horicon National Wildlife Refuge in Dodge County. W8-21 is still alive as of the end of June.

W10-21 (U) hatched to parents 12-03 and 12-05 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County and is still alive as of the end of June.

W11-21 (U) hatched to parents 36-09 and 18-03 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County and is still alive as of the end of June.

W12-21 (U) hatched to parents 24-08 and 13-02 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County during May but disappeared by the end of June.

W13-21 (U) hatched to parents 69-16 and W10-15 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County during May but disappeared by the end of June.

W14-21 (U) hatched to parents 25-09 and 2-04 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County and is still alive as of the end of June.

2020 Cohort

W3-20 (F) was last seen in Taylor Co, WI in late May.

W13-20 (M) is still in Dodge Co, WI.

W14-20 (M) and W1_18 (F) returned to Juneau Co, WI, during June. They split up and W1-18 is by herself, and W14-20 is with W6-18 (M).

W18-20 (F) and 80-19 (F) were last reported in Lee Co, IL during April.

2019 Cohort

W1-19 (F) was seen in late May in Wood Co, WI with another Whooping Crane, which we believe is 1_17 (M).

W14-19 (F) was last seen by herself in Isanti Co, MN during April.

W19-19 (U) is in Juneau Co, WI, with W10-18 (U).

79-19 (F) is in Dodge County, WI with 16-11 (M).

80-19 (F) and W18-20 (F) were last reported in Lee Co, IL during April.

Mortality

None known.

Story submitted by Hillary Thompson, North America Program Crane Analyst. Click here to learn more about our work in North America.