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Whooping Crane "first lady" death due to gunshot

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by jenjscott, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

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    I follow the activities daily of Operation Migration, part of a group teaching whooping cranes to migrate behind an ultralight aircraft. If you remember the old Disney movie "Follow Me Home" about the geese being taught to migrate, these are the same people. They are trying to re-establish an eastern flock in the US. In the forties, we were down to 15 birds in the wild in the western flock. This number has increased greatly, but if some illness were to kill off that flock, there would be no more. So this project is to establish an eastern flock to safeguard the species. The "first family" was the first pair of whooping cranes to raise a whooping crane in the wild in the eastern flyway in over one hundred years (2006). They were taught to migrate in 2002 and have been migrating by themselves ever since. The female's remains were found the other day, and necropsy determined that she had been shot. Here is a press release pdf if you're interested in reading more.

    http://www.operationmigration.org/USFWS_whoopingcrane.pdf

    [​IMG]

    PS, I stand corrected, the movie was "Fly Away Home".
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2009

  2. Amyable

    Amyable Songster

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    That's a real shame [​IMG] I know a lot of farmers don't like cranes because they cause damage to crops, but it's pretty easy to tell the diff between a white whooping crane and a gray sandhill; the latter is plentiful. Hope they catch the jerk.

    In college, my wildlife class took a field trip to the International Crane Foundation in WI. That is a pretty neat place, they have all sorts of endangered birds and raise up chicks, including Whoopers.
     
  3. babylady4

    babylady4 Mother Goose

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    The Whooping cranes that the International Crane Foundation raises are the same cranes that are a part of the re-establishment of the wild population. At least that is what I have always understood. I have followed their progress for years, this is really sad and I hope they catch the person who did it but it might have been a mistake in identity. They could have thought they were shooting at a white heron or an ibis or something similar....

    I thought the movie was 'Fly Away Home'..... I loved that movie, especially since I raised my own geese the same way when I was about the characters age in the movie. Mine were not wild geese though.

    I hope they figure it out, but in the long run they probably will not.
     
  4. silkiechick05

    silkiechick05 Songster

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    People make me sick.
     
  5. dacjohns

    dacjohns People Cracker Upper

    Quote:I believe that herons and ibises are protected. It would have had to have mistaken for waterfowl that can be legally hunted for a valid case of mistaken identity. Legal waterfowl don't look anything like a crane.
     
  6. babylady4

    babylady4 Mother Goose

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    Well of course, I was just thinking that some idiot was out with a gun shooting at anything that moved, and can't tell the difference between white birds.........

    Like a kid that did not know any better? [​IMG]

    It really is too bad.
     
  7. mom'sfolly

    mom'sfolly Crowing

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    That is so sad. They are making a remarkable comeback, but the lose of any breeding age bird is so sad, especially by gunshot. Some people just shouldn't be allowed in the woods with weapons.
     

  8. rodriguezpoultry

    rodriguezpoultry Langshan Lover

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    I think the movie is "Fly Away Home", but I could be wrong.

    I remember, in an OLD book, it said that there were fewer than 15 breeding pairs of whooping cranes. I thought "wow!" I was maybe 7 when I read this book? And it said that the whooping crane was somewhere around 6' tall? I'm not sure how accurate THAT book was! lol
     
  9. Amyable

    Amyable Songster

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    RoPo, you're not far off on the height. A bird that can almost look me in the eye, [​IMG]

    From the ICF website:

    Whooping Crane
    Grus americana
    Height: ~150 cm, 5 ft.
    Weight: ~6 kg, 14-17 lbs.
    Wingspan: ~7-8 ft, 210-240 cm.
    Population: ~400
    Trend: Increasing
     
  10. rodriguezpoultry

    rodriguezpoultry Langshan Lover

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    Dude...that book must have been crazy good! I think I need to see if I can find it! [​IMG]
     

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