Peanut’s Exercise Routine

Joe, Colleen and I went out earlier today to let #4-14 (aka Peanut) out onto the runway for some exercise. While he flapped and strolled along the runway, his six girlfriends peeped loudly inside, voicing their displeasure at having to stay behind in the enclosure.

Here are some images I was able to capture during his flight session.


Number 4-14 received his leg-mounted radio transmitter on Thursday. Just like his flockmates initially poked and prodded and preened theirs, he too seems annoyed by the antenna.


Peanut and his impressive 7-8 ft. wingspan flies toward me.


Whooping cranes have five black primary feathers on each wingtip, which help to provide thrust – moving the bird through the air. The flexibility of these long, stiff flight feathers also allows for the spreading of those feathers, which helps to reduce the creation of wingtip vortices, thereby reducing drag.


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  1. Fran (Luvmolly) October 5, 2014 8:03 pm

    So good to see our Peanut get to stretch his wings and fly and flap around… thanks so much for the pics too..


  2. Maggie Turk October 5, 2014 7:57 pm

    Heather, it gives me the ‘turkey bumps’ to see peanut flying so well and I still worry about his bad leg. Sure hope all goes well with the migration south.


  3. jillbru October 5, 2014 7:53 pm

    Thanks so much for the pictures, I have been missing everyone and worried about Peanut. He looks gorgeous!

  4. Shepherd October 5, 2014 5:22 pm

    Peanut is purdy! Thanks for pics! We know they are fine – but its good to SEE them 😉

  5. Linda Lee October 5, 2014 4:41 pm

    beautiful pics. Can’t wait to get some live shots when migration starts.


  6. Claire DeLand October 5, 2014 4:02 pm

    Oh AWESOME!!! Peanut looks great!!!! his primaries are so lovely 🙂 Thanks for showing us!!!!

  7. Nancy Freeman October 5, 2014 3:18 pm

    Wonderful photos !!! Thanks for sharing so we can all stay tuned in to what’s happening :)))

  8. Mary Cohen October 5, 2014 3:13 pm

    Heather, thank you so, so much for pictures and information. We (chatters) have been having colt withdrawal and any pics are so appreciated.


  9. Kay October 5, 2014 3:12 pm

    Many thanks, Heather. You (and Peanut) have made my day!

  10. Patricia Ewing October 5, 2014 2:52 pm

    ditto on all of the above comments.. 🙂

  11. Sally Swanson October 5, 2014 2:24 pm

    Peanut is a very handsome and graceful crane!


  12. Sheryl Erickson October 5, 2014 1:18 pm

    Great pics of Peanut and excellent educational comments – thanks Heather!

  13. Lindi Allen October 5, 2014 12:14 pm

    So beautiful and he prob thought “this feels good” 🙂

  14. Patti (feathered3) October 5, 2014 12:08 pm

    Whoooop Peanut! WTG. SO good to see you airborne, onec again! Soon you’ll be raedy to join your gal friends and head south! <3

  15. birdlady9 October 5, 2014 11:46 am

    Thank you, Heather, these photos made my day 🙂

  16. Mindy Finklea October 5, 2014 11:09 am

    Thank you Heather….wonderful pictures of our “little” Peanut. Glad he’s doing well enough to get his “jewelry” on….

  17. Jenny Gibbs October 5, 2014 10:58 am

    Heather, photos are wonderful 🙂 Love the one of Peanut zipping his antenna!