This news just in from Bev Paulan, Wisconsin DNR pilot who completed a Whooping crane survey flight on Monday.

Bev told us, “During my crane survey flight yesterday, I found this lonely bird hanging out with a bunch of Sandhills. No working transmitter, no leg bands and some brown feathers. The general consensus is that I found the little runaway, 2-11. She was in a marsh in Adams County where last year we had a pair nest.”

Also found on the aerial survey was 38-08 who was sitting on a nest. She said that 9-05 & 13-03 were almost finished building their nest and that 27-07 & 12-05 looked to be just starting nest construction.

Altogether Bev located 31 pairs, of which at least three consist of a crane from the 2010 hatch year and a few more from the 2009 generation. Bev said, “I am not holding out a lot of hope for those young birds to nest successfully, but even so, practice makes perfect.”

She witnessed was a short vignette as she surveyed the Mead Wildlife Area. The mate of female 5-10 was chasing off Sandhills, an exercise that produced “quite an aerial dogfight” before the Sandhill disengaged and flew off into the woods.

Thanks for the news and the photo Bev!

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