As Geoff mentioned on Monday, chicks 8-14 & 10-14 have been reluctant to exit the pen each morning. The past couple of days, however, I’ve seen an improvement. This morning six of the young cranes came pouring out, while number 10 held back. She eventually sashayed up to the feed station and decided now would be a good time for a quick bite of breakfast. Between nibbles, you could see her craning her neck (ha!) to see the trike waiting outside but no way would she head out on her own.
Brooke began taxiing to the north end of the grass strip with the six cranes trailing behind in a flurry of wings and legs. It would seem most are now flying in what we call ‘ground effect’ flight. Once at the far end he left the engine running while he climbed out and began passing out the grapes – a reward for a job well done.
Shortly after, we noticed number 10-14 sauntering toward him and her flockmates. Seems Geoff and Tom had managed to convince her that it was more fun outside the pen.
About halfway to the trike I think she spied the grapes and flap-ran the rest of the way to get her share of the treats. Maybe she just likes being fashionably late?
Training proceeded with a couple of forays into the tall grass by a couple of the crane-kids but they always came back to the runway once the aircraft began heading the other way. All in all a definite improvement.
Here are some images that Tom Schultz captured from inside the enclosure to share with you.