Countdown to Migration: October 10, 2008

Today's Report Includes:

How is this adult crane preparing for migration? >>
Photo Vickie Henderson

Orientation & Welcome to New Participants >>

Chick Chat: One Expelled, 14 Left

When Patuxent folks put #810 on the plane for Necedah in June, they wrote this message to pilots on the front of his shipping crate: Good Luck. This week the cranky bird used his last chance and was kicked out of flight school. (See details on his bio page.) In eight years, #810 is the only bird to be expelled for bad manners! Luckily the other 14 are good team players, and all now blended at one pen site — another big step in the countdown to migration. This week's weather brought only one training day. The team lets the birds out for exercise and socializing on no-fly days, but with one week left, they need practice flying as a group. Keep your fingers crossed for flyable weather ahead!

Cohort 1 flew to join the other eleven birds at the big pen on October 3!

Photo Jane Duden, Journey North

Training Timeline: Latest Milestones Timeline Events >>

You can add "all chicks at one pen site" to your own timeline for this year’s chicks. The chicks have grown nearly as tall as some team members when they lift their beaks up high. See other milestones and key events for this year's chicks:

  • Key Timeline Events: Hatch Year 2008 >>

Photo Tara Urette Hood
Journal: What Dangers Lurk? Hear Ranger Jennifer >>

Pilot Chris reports that seven wolves have been spotted recently from the observation tower. Chris scans the area for these elusive animals every time he flies over the refuge, but wolves aren't the only predators that would go after cranes. Hear Ranger Jennifer's audio clip to answer these questions:

  • What predators are dangers to the young cranes in Wisconsin? How does the team keep the chicks safe?

Write your answers in your journal.

A wolf at Necedah NWR

Photo Operation Migration
Meet the Team: Crane Quiz #6 Print the Quiz >>

How many kids can say their dad flies with Whooping cranes? You'll find out when you meet the dedicated team that will lead the chicks on their first journey south. Click on facts and photos here:

  • Operation Migration Team 2008 >>
  • Meet the team in CRANE QUIZ #6 >>


Photo Mark Chenoweth
Meet More of the Team! >>

Booklet: "Countdown to Migration" Teacher Guide >>

October 17 is the target date for departure. The cranes just show up and fly, but the crew has a lot to do! What’s on their job list right now? And what makes the “sweet spot” so important to the birds in flight?

Find answers in “Countdown to Migration,” the final booklet of our pre-migration series of six titles. Each booklet comes in a matching Web slide show as well as .pdf format ready to ready to print, fold, and enjoy.


This week's booklet! >>
Web slide show version >>

Countdown to Migration: Posted Fridays
Bookmark the Whooping Crane Home Page

Weekly Summaries are posted (by email) to registered participants on FRIDAYS: Sep. 5, 12, 19, 26; Oct 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; Nov. 7, 14, 21 — or until the Eastern flock's newest chicks reach their winter home in Florida!

Pre-migration: Each Friday before migration, a brief e-mail notice gives current newsy tidbits and announces a downloadable booklet for building background knowledge.
During migration: When migration begins in October, the Friday e-mails will summarize the DAILY Highlight Updates that were posted on the Web during the week. You'll want to go to the Web for the latest maps, facts, photos, and fun!

We'll be back with more news next Friday: October 17, 2008. Will migration begin that day?
We'll see!

More Whooping Crane Lessons and Teaching Ideas!