Crane Training Update

Yesterday was the second day that training was cancelled due to weather and with winds out of the SSW this morning at 5-7mph and a chance of a thunderstorm present, today will likely be the third. Weather forecasters are notoriously incorrect however, so be sure to check out the CraneCam for the final decision about training today.

Saturday was the last time the Whooping crane Class of 2013 went through their paces with the aircraft and all eight were airborne for a total of 12 minutes in two flights. The first flight lasted 8 minutes and after a brief rest and some grapes as treats, Richard took off with them again for a 4 minute tour around White River Marsh.

Just before he landed with them on the runway adjacent their enclosure, chick #7-13 decided he’d had enough and landed out in the marsh. The rest of the cohort was led into the pen and Richard was airborne again – intent on finding the dropout and guiding him back home, however about 30 seconds after he took to the air, #7-13 came cruising in from the south end of the field and landed right next to the enclosure.

Wendy Chapman was one of the folks in the viewing blind on Saturday morning and she graciously shared some of her images with us to share with you. (click each image for a larger view)

whooping crane in flight with aircraft

All eight young Whooping cranes were following Richard last Saturday.

whooping cranes follow aircraft

Eight young Whooping cranes with the aircraft make another pass by the viewing blind.

whooping cranes landing

Everyone comes in for a landing. I always find it humorous when I see the young cranes getting ready to land. It’s as if they’re standing in mid-air. 

Juvenile Whooping crane in flight

whooping crane #7-13 arrives fashionably late after dropping out of the flight very close to the crane pen.

If you would like to schedule a viewing blind visit, please contact Doug Pellerin at: 920-923-0016 or by email: pelican0711(at)


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  1. Kay Blackwood August 27, 2013 8:45 pm

    Thank you for sharing these fun photos! Love the one with their legs down for landing, and the great detail on the pic of 7-13!

  2. Jamin August 27, 2013 7:09 pm

    Terrific photographs, Thanks so !

  3. Margie Tomlinson August 27, 2013 4:21 pm

    Really great pictures, Wendy! (You luckey girl)! Thank you so much for allowing us to see them by passing them along!

  4. John S. Perilloux August 27, 2013 9:40 am

    Thanks for the excellent photos, Wendy.