Yahoo! Another Flight (+55 Miles)
November 4, 2011: Migration Day 27

A young Whooping crane in flight with the ultralight plane.

Image: Operation Migration

Despite the windy weather forecast, Brooke took a test flight and found good conditions aloft. Off went the birds and trikes on the 55-mile flight to Livingston County, Illinois! Brooke landed with six and Richard with three. They were in the air almost two hours today, making progress south, and behaving wonderfully! Brooke describes it: "A head wind was the order of the day. My speed slowed to a mere 20 mph at one point. The landscape of Illinois passed slowly beneath me, but soon enough the farm with the pre-set up pen appeared and we fought our way down through trashy air to a muddy landing.

"Richard was moments behind me, and within five minutes all the chicks were taking turns at feeders and water pails. After securing the electric fence we again took off and headed for camp. It appears that migration is returning to normal—if there is such a thing."

The TrikeCam broadcasts LIVE each day they fly.

In the Classroom: Journal or Discussion

  • (a)What do you notice about the Illinois landscape in the photo above? Now think about times when the pilots said something spooked the birds. What things might spook these young cranes as they fly over unfamiliar territory? These photos from the 2005 migration might help (click to enlarge):
  • (b-for-bonus) Richard flew with crane #3-11 ,#5-11 and #9-11 on today's flight. Which birds flew with Joe? What strategy did you use in answering this question? HINT: There's a helpful link right on this page.

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