Skipping Into FLORIDA! (+104 Miles)
December 10, 2010: Migration Day 62

Video: Operation Migration Trike Cam
Click the video clip to see the cranes flap, soar, and ride the waves of air coming off the wing of the ultralight.

Go ahead: Jump with joy! Today's lead pilot, Joe Duff, led the young cranes on their last flight as a group of 10, skipping a stop and entering FLORIDA! Today they passed the thousand-mile mark of flight. And (oh happy day!) they reached Jefferson County, the location where both travel pens will be set up and the Class of 2010 will be split into two groups. Five of the birds have one more flight to their wintering grounds on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. The five heading for Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge ("Chass") have 3 more flights to their wintering grounds. You have hung in there with these wonderful birds, and now we can almost see the finish lines! When do you predict they'll reach them?

In the Classroom: Journal or Discussion

(a) Color another state we have passed through on your personal migration map. Update your miles charts. How many miles have they come? How many miles remain to St. Marks NWR, at 1,250 miles? To Chass, at 1,285.9 miles?

Migration Math and History: It was not until January 11, 2010 when the Class of 2009 landed in Jefferson County, FL. They had flown more miles in that week than they did in the first 49 days of their migration! Why so many delays? Compare: How many miles did the Class of 2010 fly in their first week? In this current week of Dec. 3-10?

(b-for-bonus) Yesterday Heather tuned into the pen cam at St. Marks NWR in Florida and was astonished to see six Whooping cranes! They were foraging inside the release pen that was their home on arrival last year, and will become the new home base for five of the Class of 2010, perhaps in a day or two. What might be some challenges if the older birds are still at the release pen when the 2010 chicks arrive?

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