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October 7, 2003

Standing By: Lead, Chase, Scout
Here Brooke flies lead; Joes flies chase. Photo OM for WCEP

Today could be the final day at Necedah. Before you read on, what do you think the team is doing in the final hours before departure?

The pilots and ground crew do much more than train and attend to the cranes. They must also build and repair the travel pens (enclosures) that will keep the birds safe at the stopover sites along the the way. They must be sure to have everything they need to keep planes, cranes, people, pens, trailers, behicles, and motor homes in top condition on the 1200-mile journey. Each of the planned stopover sites must be in readiness too. It will take many, many people working together to carry out this migration plan.

Joe flies lead: Richard flies chase.
Photos OM for WCEP
Flying over Necedah NWR.

Later we'll learn more about the duties of the support team. Now let's hear OM Administrative Director Heather Ray describe the duties of the pilots who will lead the birds by flying the 350-pound trikes.

NEWS FLASH! See what's up with #303 today. She's down, but not out.

Try This! Journaling Question
  • Last year's yearling cranes should be itching to migrate, and it will be their first unaided journey south. What's your prediction about how #209 (Crane #9 from Hatch Year 2002) will fare on the journey south? Remember: She missed 391 miles (six flight segments) on last year's ultralight-let migration south. She was captured, crated and flown back to Necedah NWR on May 4 to ensure she'd make it back.

Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure made possible by the

Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).

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