Final Shipment From Patuxent

From Dr. Glenn Olsen:

The last whooping cranes going to a release program from Patuxent have now left. We were sad to see them go. We started rearing whooping cranes for release in 1993, first for the Florida project, then for Wisconsin (including all the ultralight birds released in Wisconsin) and also for the past 7 years for the Louisiana release. 

I recently counted up the whooping cranes currently in the different populations in the wild, and based on the numbers supplied by the various folks monitoring the populations, fully 35% of whooping cranes in the wild were captive reared released birds. Looking at theses captive reared birds in the wild, 63% were reared at Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. We are going to miss helping everyone out with rearing whooping cranes for release and doing the research required to produce a self-sustaining population. 

Sharon Peregoy and Robert Doyle load the last Whooping Crane onto the Windway aircraft.

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  1. Cheryl N. October 6, 2017 3:47 pm

    Thank you so much to you and the rest of the Patuxent staff for everything you have done over the years to help these precious, endangered birds. You have made a difference. I’m so sorry about the end of the program at Patuxent.

  2. Kathryn Whaley October 4, 2017 7:43 pm

    This has been fascinating! I have watched it for years. On the good side of what mankind can accomplish. God bless and thank you – all the dedicated people of Operation Migration!

  3. Craniac Mary October 4, 2017 1:49 pm

    Another blow to the gut to absorb. Dr. Olsen and staff, there aren’t words adequate to thank you for your invaluable contribution to Whooping Crane survival and the expansion of human knowledge about this magnificent species, its behavior, development, habitat and needs. Thank you a thousand times over. Blessings going forward.

  4. Mindy October 4, 2017 11:50 am

    Thank you so much for your post Dr. Olsen. I am sure it tugged at your heartstrings to see these last ones go. There is no way to thank you and the staff at Patuxent for all the dedication and care given the Whooping Cranes during your years of raising them. The precious results of your work are out there in the wild, living on and carrying on as they should. You and your co-workers are priceless gems woven into their stories….

  5. Catherine Wohlfeil October 3, 2017 10:11 pm

    To Dr. Olsen and all the wonderful staff at Patuxent —
    Any contribution to the environment and the wildlife nurtured and protected thereby is one which gives untold return for generations to come. Your contribution will be one which gives hope to the sustainability of the gentle angel of the air, the whooping crane. Bravo to all… Your work and efforts on their behalf will be one of lasting endurance. You will be dearly missed… Thank you for all you have done, and hopefully will continue to do in whatever path you find into the future…

  6. Billy Brooks October 3, 2017 7:54 pm

    Thank you to the moon and back Patuxent Wildlife Research Center Whooping Crane Program staff, interns and volunteers !

    You have inspired the world!

    Billy Brooks

  7. Jean P. aka CrabtowneMd October 3, 2017 6:18 pm

    Thank you for all that you and the others at Patuxent Wildlife Research Center have done. As a Maryland resident familiar with the public areas of Patuxent, I am saddened that your facility will no longer be involved in Whooping Crane rearing. As an OM supporter, I am confident that the program will adjust and go on. Thank you again for your work and for citing the statistics that show how important Patuxent’s contribution has been to the Whooping Crane recovery.

  8. Rolando October 3, 2017 4:01 pm

    sad but what would happen now the birds at Patuxent will still be producing eggs Thank you for all your work