Photo: Marianne Wellington

Meet the 2009 DAR Whooping Crane Chicks!
Crane DAR #38-09

Date Hatched

June 17 , 2009



Pre-Migr. Weight: 5.3 kg

Egg Source: USGS Patuxent WRC

Leg Bands


Left Leg
Right Leg


  • Read more about the raising and naming of the DAR chicks.
    *Scroll to bottom for most recent history.*

DAR 38-08 seemed to be needier than the other chicks in his first weeks after hatching at ICF. He cried if he was left in the run and not able to be with "the costume" in the yard. Unfortunately, he developed a mild health issue that needed to be treated twice a day. Each time he was picked up for treatment, the chick would struggle and stress call. If he was in the yard, he calmed down and stayed near the costume, appearing to be quite content. He and 36-09 are sharing the same run now that they are at Necedah NWR. He is banded red on the right leg.

He was doing very well and close to flying by the end of August.

October weather brought sun, wind, rain and snow. The chicks seemed to enjoy testing their wings in the winds. Several days they birds made flights where they were almost out of view flying both to the north and south of their pen site. A couple of times they were out of view for a period of time, and someof the flew over to visit the ultralight chicks in their pen! We couldn't tell which chicks did that because they didn't get banded until Oct. 13. They are building up their flight strength in these final days or weeks before migration.

Crane 83-09 was released at Site 3 on Necedah NWR on October 24 along with DAR 32-09. The two stayed in that area the rest of October. On November 1 they joined with all but two of the other DAR chicks and flew in undirected flight over Monroe and Juneau Counties. Are they getting restless? Signals from the radio transmitters on the birds' leg bands will help biologists from ICF and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service as they track movements of the released DAR cranes now and throughout their migration. Stay tuned!

Notes by Marianne Wellington, ICF. Thank you!


Migration History

First Migration, Fall 2009: DAR 38-09 began migration Nov. 26 with several other Whooping cranes that migrated as a group before landing to roost at an undetermined location(s) in Illinois. On Nov. 27 he resumed migrating with pairs #216 and 716 and #512 and 722. They were reported at a stopover site in Knox County, Indiana, on November 28. DAR #38-09 remained with six adult Whooping Cranes in Knox County, Indiana for the winter.

Spring 2010, First Migration North: Male 38-09 (DAR) left on his first northward migration on March 17 with adult crane pairs 216/716 and 512/722. His signal was detected at Necedah NWR on March 22! By April 20 he'd been spending time up in Marathon County, WI. Said Eva, "He was likely kicked out of the group that he spent the winter with because they were all breeding pairs."

Fall 2010: Migrated and wintered in Hamilton County, Tennessee with #906 and #906.

Spring 2011: The group with #38-09 (DAR), #906 and #506 left Hamilton County, TN sometime between Feb. 25 and 27. They were reported back in the Necedah NWR area by March 21.

Fall 2011: No reports

Spring 2012: Male #38-09 (DAR), with female #34-09 (DAR) detected on Necedah NWR on March 23.

Fall 2012:

Spring 2013: Male #38-09 (DAR) split with his mate #34-09 (DAR) and he is now back in Wisconsin with #23-10 (who had split from 37-07 during spring migration).

Fall 2013: Migrated with crane #26-10 to Wheeler NWR in Alabama, arriving sometime before January 21.

Spring 2014: DAR 38-09 began migration from the Wheeler NWR in Alabama on February 15-18 along with Cranes #19-11, 3-11, 4-11, 17-11, and pair #26-09 / 27-06. This large group was reported in Gibson County, Indiana, on February 21. They then moved to Lawrence County, Illinois, by the next day and were seen with an eighth (and unknown) bird, whom tracker Eva believed might be #26-10. By April 9, #38-09 had not yet been confirmed back at Necedah NWR but he has a nonfunctional transmitter and all the other birds that he was known to be traveling with through Illinois had all returned to Neceda NWR.

Fall 2014: DAR 38-09 migrated in November to Knox County, Indiana with #3-11 and #24-13. They remained and associated with several other eastern flock Whooping Cranes at this location during the winter.

Spring 2015: Male DAR 38-09 migrated back to Juneau County, WI.

Fall 2015: DAR 38-09 migrated to Morgan County, Alabama for early winter, then moved up to Greene County, Indiana for the second halfl of winter.

Spring 2016: DAR 38-09 was seen back in Juneau County, Wisconsin, in April but wandered all summer back and forth between Green County, Indiana and Junau County, Wisconsin.

Fall 2016: DAR 38-09 migrated to Greene Co, IN and then to Morgan County, Alabama by the end of December.

Spring 2017: On February 18-19, male #38-09 DAR began northward migration from Wheeler NWR in north Alabama with #6-15. They were next in Greene County, Indiana and before April 1 had returned to Juneau County, WI.

Last updated: 4/3/17

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