Migration 2007 is Underway! (+4 Miles)
October 13, 2007: Migration Day 1

Photo Jane Duden


Whoopee! Seventeen Whooping Crane chicks and their ultralight airplane "parents" left today on the chicks' first journey south! Amazingly, all 17 made the first leg of the journey on their own wing power—although not without some turnbacks and second attempts. One of the crane-kids (710) landed in the marsh in front of the crowd who came to see them depart. Several minutes later, we heard the buzz of Brooke's ultralight, back to "pick up" the bird. To our awe and joy, the bird rose up on dazzling white wings and moved right next to Brooke's wing for a nice, easy ride to the first stop. Beautiful!

Only Four Miles?
They flew four miles, just far enough to get them to unfamiliar territory. The team has learned this is a good way to ensure they'd pay attention to the trike, and to give the birds a successful first flight without tiring them. We're OFF, for what we hope is a swift and safe migration for all!


In the Classroom

  • Today's Journal Question:
  • (a) Why did the team plan such a short flight for the crane's first day away from the refuge? Give two reasons.
    (b-for-Bonus) What problems might have come up if the team had tried to fly the usual 20-some miles?
  • Migration History: Now you can start filling in your migration comparison chart. How does this year's departure date compare with past years? Make some predictions for the other categories on the chart and see what happens. Revise your predictions as new information comes in.
  • Map the Migration: Use our map or make your own with this migration data.

Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure presented in cooperation with the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).