Harvesting Season – Chapter 2

It’s really cold out this morning, 24 degrees. The birds came off roost a half an hour later than usual.

They then went from field to wetland and back again. I took advantage of the wetland time to go get gas and coffee at Kwik Trip. Back with plenty of time to spare, I snuggled in the blanket I keep in the van, using the coffee as much as a hand warmer as the necessary morning beverage it is.

Eventually they flew back to the field, but no sooner did they land and two combines lumbered into view. Evidently cars and trucks are one thing and giant green machines are another! Back to the wetlands!!

I’m betting soon we have more AG fields to explore!

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  1. Jean P. aka CrabtowneMd October 30, 2017 11:08 am

    Awesome photo! So glad to hear they respect giant farm machinery and glad they will have more fields to glean soon. Thank you for keeping an eye on them and updating all of us.

  2. Linda October 29, 2017 7:01 pm

    What a beautiful photo?

  3. Diane Riffel October 29, 2017 6:59 pm

    Thank you for the updates!

  4. Diane Riffel October 29, 2017 6:58 pm

    They are just So cute!


  5. Barb October 29, 2017 2:51 pm

    Thanks for the great shot of the Whoppers in a flight pattern. Do you think they are all adults or a mixture of adults and youngsters? About the flight pattern, do birds learn this from adults, or do they just figure it out for themselves? Also, I’ve noticed in photos lately that the youngsters still have their tan feathers. Is it harder for them to fly long distances when still not in full white plumage?
    Thanks so much.

    • Heather Ray October 29, 2017 3:52 pm

      The cranes in the photo are the 7 costume-reared youngsters. They pretty quickly figure out that flying in a chevron is more efficient as they get a slight assist from the bird in front. As for the brown feathers, this has no effect at all on their flight abilities, however, they are younger so until they gain muscle and are full grown they won’t be as experienced at flight at the adults.

      • Barb October 29, 2017 5:22 pm

        Thanks so much for replying. Will the adults leading them South wait for them because they are weaker flyers? Stay warm tomorrow.

        • Heather Ray October 30, 2017 7:23 am

          That remains to be seen and we’ll have to wait to find out.

          • Barb October 30, 2017 8:03 am

            Heather, I’m sorry I wasn’t clear. What I meant, was that as they are flying South, as the youngsters tire, do adults slow down or land for a rest stop so the young birds can rest. Or are they young left behind while the stronger flyers continue south. Thanks for your time.

          • Heather Ray October 30, 2017 1:06 pm

            Barb, there is no way to know this unfortunately.

    • Colleen Chase October 30, 2017 10:12 am

      Henry and 30-16 were just ahead of the chicks. Just a bit too far for me to get them in the frame.


  6. Di Lowe October 29, 2017 2:50 pm

    So appreciate these updates, nice to be kept in the loop. Great picture!