Meet the Class of 2012 Whooping Cranes
Hatch-year 2012 of the Eastern Flock

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baby crane #12-14 DAR
Photo: Eva Szyszkoski, ICF
Crane #14-12 DAR
Date Hatched May 31, 2012
Gender Male
Left Leg Right Leg
(VHF radio transmitter)

Personality and Training: The crew at ICF chose "prairies and wetlands" for the theme in naming the 2012 DAR birds they would costume-rear for later release with wild cranes. "Lily" is the nickname they gave to #14—and yes, he is a male. His mother is Herfy, a captive female who hatched at ICF in 1990.

Fall 2012: In early September, the chicks were transferred to Horicon National Wildlife Refuge in preparation for their release in central Wisconsin. Release took place Oct. 29. On October 30, all chicks were fine and foraging after their first overnight of freedom. Crane #14-12 (Lily) took off with Sandhill Cranes in the morning, but soon took off on his own. ICF's Marianne Wellington had hoped he would stay with the Sandhills to learn what is outside the refuge. He stayed with the sandhill cranes and began migration on November 23. He was reported "loosely associating" with demale DAR 28-05 at the Jasper-Pulaski FWA in Indiana on Nov. 25. Next he was reported with sandhill cranes in Volusia County, Florida, on December 9, where he remained through at least March 28 before spring migration.

Crane #14-12 DAR with sandhill cranes in Wisconsin November 3, 2012
Image:Eva Szyszkoski, ICF

Spring 2013: First Unaided Spring Migration North
April 7: Crane 14-12 DAR was reported in Berrien Co, Michigan, on April 23 and moved to Allegan County, Michigan by April 30. A crane reported in Lenawee County, Michigan, on June 14 was later confirmed as #14-12. He remained in the area at least through the end of August.

Fall 2013: Crane 14-12 DAR was not detected on his Michigan summering territory September 17 or 19. He was next reported in Jackson County, Michigan on October 28 — and in Brevard County, Florida, on January 4.

Spring 2014: Male #14-12 DAR remained in Brevard County, Florida, through at least March 27. He was reported in Kosciusko County, Indiana, on 2 May. He was next observed in LaPorte County, Indiana on 19 May—and also again on 17 August and 4 September.

Fall 2014: Crane #14-12 DAR remained in LaPorte County, Indiana, until beginning migration on the evening of 30 November or early morning 1 December. He was found in Jackson County, Indiana, on 1 December and had left this location by 5 December. Reports of a crane in Osceola County, Florida, on 18 January, and 2 and 15 February were likely of this bird.

Spring 2015: Male #14-12 DAR remained in Osceola County, Florida, through at least last report on 5 March. He was next reported at his previous summering location in LaPorte County, Indiana, on 28, 29 and 30 March. He wandered up to Kent County, Michigan for a while. He was last seen in Steuben Co, Indiana on June 7.

Fall 2015: Male #14-12 DAR migrated south to Indiana as usual.

Spring 2016: Male #14-12 and parent-reared (PR) female #27-14 were seen associating frequently in LaPorte Co, IN in March 2016. It appears they migrated north together, with #14-12 taking parent-reared #27-14 with him to a location around Grand Rapids, Michigan, where they were reported in early April.

Fall 2016: Male #14-12 DAR migrated south from Michigan to Meigs County, TN by the end of December.

Spring 2017: As usual, male #14-12 returned to Michigan.




Last updated: 6/1/2017