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November 22, 2002
Day 41

No Go

Pen site in Meigs County Photo OM, WCEP

Gusting winds are the bad news at the stop in Meigs County, TN. The birds added only 65.1 miles in the past week. (See the pilot log entry describing the difficult climb over the mountains to gain those miles.) The next leg of the journey will take them into Georgia. It will be another tough flight in hilly, forested terrain. The team must continue to wait for ideal flying conditions to safely lead their precious flock out of this stopover site and head for the next.

Meanwhile, yearling cranes #1 and #2 finally left Wisconsin yesterday, with Richard tracking their signals headed south. Crane #5 was still in Wisconsin with a few hundred sandhills. Trackers Lara and Colleen manage to keep tabs on Cranes #6 and #7 with the help of the radio transmitters and a small airplane. Female #7 hasn't been heard from since Nov. 15, and they wonder if she got way ahead of them and might already be in Georgia. (Crane #7 is the crane who parted with the flock on the journey north last spring and has kept to herself ever since.) In hilly Tennessee, Lara found # 6 from the airplane last Saturday, a stone's throw from where this year's migration is now. Yesterday Crane #6 foraged with about 300 sandhill cranes on a river in eastern Tennessee. ICF's Jim Harris said, "We never expected to keep tabs on all five cranes with the airplane generously provided by the Windway Capital Corporation and just three trackers. But we wanted to keep track of some of the birds." They're doing a great job!


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  • Where was the migration on Day 41 last year? When do you predict this year's young cranes will reach Florida?
  • What's your tally of no-fly days so far?

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Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).

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