Currently there are 20 Whooping cranes nests on and around Necedah NWR with the earliest one started about April 15th.
So far Black fly traps have shown that few of these biting insects have yet to emerge however, with warmer weather, their numbers are expected to bloom within a week to ten days. By then there may be as many as 25 nests. The Black flies could trigger a large abandonment but we have our fingers crossed.
The WCEP Science Team is also tracking degree heat days or how warm it has been over what time period, to determine when to expect the bloom.
The nests are being monitored using cameras and ground observations by staff from Necedah and ICF along with volunteer pilots from a non-profit called Lighthawk. Additionally, Wisconsin DNR has several pilots ready to fly surveys when needed.
Meanwhile the birds are simply following their instincts and the excitement of spring. They are oblivious to the science behind their breeding and the good wishes of thousands of people. It’s a good thing they are unaware of all the attention because it might just spoil the mood.
Pairs confirmed nesting are:
If you’d like to look up any of the biographies for these cranes, please visit Journey North!