Project Updates – 2013


November_15September_1 | June_16 | July_17 | May_2 | April_4March_6February_4January_5


Whooping Crane Update – November 15 to December 15, 2013

The attached map indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, are known to have moved from a previous location or that are long term missing.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 101 birds (56 males and 45 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 5 whooping cranes in Illinois, 37 in Indiana, 9-11 in Tennessee, 7-9 in Kentucky, 24 in Alabama, 2 in Georgia, 6 in Florida, 3 at unknown locations, 3 not reported in eight or more months, 1 presumed dead, and 2 long term missing.

Mortalities

The remains of Direct Autumn Release juvenile female no. 56-13 were discovered on private property near the Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, Dodge County, Wisconsin, on 29 November. Death likely occurred 28/29 November.

The radio transmitter and metal federal leg band of Direct Autumn Release juvenile female no. 52-13 were recovered on the Horicon National Wildlife Refuge on 4 December. Death likely occurred on 30 November or 1 December.

The fully intact carcass of Direct Autumn Release juvenile male no. 55-13 was recovered on private property near the Horicon National Wildlife Refuge on 7 December. Death had occurred shortly before collection.

Suspected Mortalities

Male no. 5-05 (nonfunctional transmitter) is suspected dead but is still included in the population totals above.

Female no. 22-07 (nonfunctional transmitter) is suspected dead and has been removed from the population totals above. She had last been confirmed at the Necedah NWR, Juneau County, Wisconsin, on 25 October. Her mate was first reported without her at their previous wintering location in Gibson County, Indiana, on 9 November and was recently seen with a different female.

Female wild-hatched juvenile no. W3-13 was last observed with her parents in Wayne County, Illinois, during an aerial survey flight on 11 December. On 13 December, also during a flight, the adults signals were located approximately 3.5 miles to the south of the signal of the juvenile. The adults have since been observed alone multiple times in the area. A ground search has so far come up empty. No. W3-13 has been removed from the population totals above.

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 14-12 was last reported in Jackson County, Michigan on 28 October. No subsequent reports.

No. 15-12 was reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late

No. 16-12 began migration from Columbia County, Wisconsin, on 22/23 November. He was confirmed at the Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge in Alabama on 4 December but had likely arrived prior to confirmation. He remains in the area.

Ultralight (UL)

Nos. 4-12 and 5-12 were reported in Pulaski County, Illinois, on 15-26 November. They were next reported on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida, on 7 December where they remained through at least last report on 13 December.

No. 7-12 was confirmed on the Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge in Alabama on 4 December, but had likely arrived prior to confirmation. She had last been observed in Winnebago County, Wisconsin, on 2 October.

No. 11-12 left the St. Marks NWR pensite in Wakulla County, Florida, on 9 February.  No subsequent reports (see below).

2013 Cohort

DAR

Nos. 52, 55, and 56-13 were discovered dead during the report period (see mortality section above).

Nos. 50, 51, and 54-13 began migration from the Horicon NWR, Dodge County, WI, on 11 December. They were detected in flight in Ogle County, Illinois, later that day and had arrived in Mason County, Illinois, by the night of 12 December. They were observed together at this location during an aerial survey on 13 December. [Based on satellite readings from no. 54-13, they remained in the area through at least roost on 16 December].

No. 57-13 began migration from the Horicon NWR, Dodge County, WI, on 15-17 November. He was reported in Meigs County, Tennessee on the evening of 20 November and remains in the area.

No. 59-13 was initially detected heading south with juveniles nos. 50, 51, and 54-13 on 11 December but separated from them and returned to the Horicon NWR where she was captured. She was held overnight at the International Crane Foundation and transported south to the Wheeler NWR in Alabama the next day where she was released near other cranes, both sandhill and whooping. She remains in the area.

UL

The eight juveniles that departed from the White River Marsh State Wildlife Area in Green Lake County, Wisconsin, on 2 October following the ultra-light aircraft were located at their fifteenth stopover location in Winston County, Alabama at the end of the report period. [They continued migration on 18 December].

Parent Reared

No. 22-13 departed Laporte County, Indiana, 23 November. He was detected in flight heading south through Jackson County, Indiana, that afternoon and satellite readings placed him in Meigs County, Tennessee, by early morning on 24 November. He remains in the area.

No. 24-13 remained with pair nos. 2-04 and 8-09 at the adults previous wintering location in Hopkins County, Kentucky, throughout the report period.

Wild-hatched

Female no. W3-13 and her parents, nos. 9-03 and 3-04, arrived at the adults previous wintering location in Wayne County, Illinois, by 14 November. No. W3-13 was last observed alive during an aerial survey flight on 11 December. She is currently missing and presumed dead (see suspected mortalities section above).

No recent reports

Female no. 2-11 was last reported at her wintering location in Marion County, Florida, on 9 April.

Female no. 11-12 left the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge pensite in Wakulla County, Florida, on 9 February.

Male no. 15-12 was last reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late February or early March.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 12-07 was last observed on the Necedah NWR in Wisconsin on 25 April 2012. He has a nonfunctional transmitter and cannot be tracked.

Female no. 16-10 was last observed with sandhill cranes in Ottawa County, Michigan, on 6 May 2012.

We thank Windway Aviation Corp. and pilots Jerry Burns and Mike Frakes (Windway) for aerial tracking assistance and transportation of no. 59-13. We also thank Travis Stoelting (Indiana DNR), John Pohl, Marty Jones, Rick Houlk, Dan Kaiser and the staff at the Wheeler NWR for tracking assistance.

Map of whooping crane locations, mid-December 2013.


Whooping Crane Update – September 1 to November 14, 2013

 


Whooping Crane Update – June 16 to August 31, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month or that are long term missing.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 101 birds (54 males and 46 females and 1 unknown). This total includes one surviving wild-hatched chick.

Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 94 whooping cranes in Wisconsin, 2 in Michigan, 3 not recently reported, and 2 long term missing.

Aerial view of whooping crane chick with adult.

Whooping crane chick W3-13 with parent on July 23, 2013.

Photo by Wisconsin DNR; Beverly Paulan

Mortality

The remains of female no. 13-12 were collected in Dane County, Wisconsin, on 18 July. Death had likely occurred on or around 17 June. Her remains were sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison for necropsy.

The remains of male no. 17-10 were collected on his summering territory on the Necedah National Wildlife Refuge, Juneau County, Wisconsin, on 20 August. Based on tracking data, death likely had occurred between 2-23 July. He was in molt at the time of his death.

Suspected Mortality

Female no. 15-04 (nonfunctional transmitter) has not been observed since 11 May. A single bird was observed on territory on 14 May and her mate, no. 5-05, was confirmed alone on their territory on the Necedah NWR on 21 June.  A bird with a nonfunctional transmitter (assumed to be no. 5-05) has consistently been observed with female no. 23-10 on nos. 5-05 and 15-04’s old territory. No. 15-04 has been removed from the population totals above.

Reproduction

Pair nos. 28-08 and 5-10 lost their chick (no. W1-13) between the afternoon of 26 June and the afternoon of 2 July at 36-42 days of age.

Pair nos. 9-03 and 3-04 hatched one chick from their renest (no. W3-13) that currently survives.

A final nesting summary for 2013 below:

Female Male

Suspected or

Confirmed Nest Initiation

19-04 12-02 15 April
13-03 9-05 16 April
5-09 33-07 16 April
9-03 3-04 16 April
24-08 14-08 18 April
16-07 16-02 18 April
W1-06 10-03 19 April
8-09 2-04 19 April
32-09 DAR 41-09 DAR 21 April
4-09 16-04 23 April
26-07 11-02 23 April
36-09 DAR 18-03 23 April
5-10 28-08 23 April
35-09 6-09 23 April
42-09 DAR 24-09 24 April
15-09 11-09 25 April
26-09 27-06 DAR 27 April
7-09 17-03 28 April
18-02 13-02 28 April
22-07 12-05 29 April

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 13-12 remained in Dane County, Wisconsin, until her death around 17 June (see above).

No. 14-12 the crane reported in Lenawee County, Michigan, on 14 June was later confirmed as no. 14-12. He remained in the area throughout the report period.

No. 15-12 was reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late February or early March. No subsequent reports.

No. 16-12 remained with sandhills in Dodge County, Wisconsin, throughout the report period.

Ultralight (UL)

Nos. 4-12 and 5-12 remained in Green Lake County, Wisconsin, throughout the report period.

No. 7-12 was reported in Waushara County, Wisconsin, by 16 August. She had last been detected in Marquette County on 12 June.

No. 11-12 left the St. Marks NWR pensite in Wakulla County, Florida, on 9 February.  No subsequent reports.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 12-07 was last observed on the Necedah NWR in Wisconsin on 25 April 2012. He has a nonfunctional transmitter and cannot be tracked.

Female no. 16-10 was last observed with sandhill cranes in Ottawa County, Michigan, on 6 May 2012.

We thank pilots Bev Paulan and Mike Callahan (Wisconsin DNR) for aerial tracking assistance.

Map of whooping crane locations.

Whooping Crane Update – July 17, 2013

Wild-hatched Chicks Update: Sadly, pair #5-10 and #28-08 lost their remaining chick, #W1-13.  Pair #9-03 and #3-04 re-nested and have hatched at least one chick, #W3-13!  Pair #7-07 and #39-07 had a late first nest but did not hatch any chicks (two eggs were recovered from their nest).


Whooping Crane Update – May 2 to June 15, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, are at unknown locations or that are long term missing.

Aerial view of whooping crane pair on nest.

Aerial view of whooping crane pair 36-09 (a DAR bird) and 18-03 on their nest, which was started on April 23.

Photo by ICF; Eva Szyszkoski

Aerial Support provided by LightHawk

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 106 birds (55 males and 51 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 98 whooping cranes in Wisconsin, 2 in Michigan, 3 at unknown locations, and 3 long term missing.  Male 13-11 who has been missing since fall migration 2011 is now considered dead and is not included in the population totals above.

Mortality

The carcass of female no. 9-10 was collected on her summering territory in Adams County, Wisconsin, on 25 April. Death likely occurred around 19 April. Her remains were sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison for necropsy.

Reproduction

Twenty pairs were confirmed with nests between 15 and 29 April.

A final nesting summary for 2013 below:

Female Male

Suspected or

Confirmed Nest Initiation

19-04 12-02 15 April
13-03 9-05 16 April
5-09 33-07 16 April
9-03 3-04 16 April
24-08 14-08 18 April
16-07 16-02 18 April
W1-06 10-03 19 April
8-09 2-04 19 April
32-09 DAR 41-09 DAR 21 April
4-09 16-04 23 April
26-07 11-02 23 April
36-09 DAR 18-03 23 April
5-10 28-08 23 April
35-09 6-09 23 April
42-09 DAR 24-09 24 April
15-09 11-09 25 April
26-09 27-06 DAR 27 April
7-09 17-03 28 April
18-02 13-02 28 April
22-07 12-05 29 April

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 13-12 began migration from the Hiwassee WR in Tennessee on 23 April. PTT readings placed her in Orange/Martin Counties, Indiana that night. She continued north into Putnam County, Indiana, on 24/25 April and completed migration to Dane County, Wisconsin on 1 May.

No. 14-12 remained with sandhill cranes in Volusia County, Florida, through at least last report on 18 April. He was reported in Berrien County, Michigan, on 23 April and moved to Allegan County, Michigan by 30 April where he remains.

No. 15-12 was reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late February or early March. No subsequent reports.

No. 16-12 remained in Hendry County, Florida, through at least last report on 9 April. He was next reported in Dodge County, Wisconsin, on 29 April where he remains.

Ultralight (UL)

Nos. 4-12, 5-12 and 7-12 left the pensite at the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida on 10 March. They were reported in Sauk County, Wisconsin on 19 April. Female no. 7-12 sustained an injury to her left leg/foot but has steadily been improving. Nos. 4-12 and 5-12 apparently left the area between 25-27 April and have not yet been relocated.

No. 11-12 left the pensite on 9 February.  No subsequent reports.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 13-11 (DAR) was last detected migrating south over NE Illinois on 29 November 2011.  He is now considered dead and is not included in the population totals above.

Female no. 3-10 was last detected on her wintering grounds in Marion County, Florida, on 22 February 2012.

Male no. 12-07 was last observed on the Necedah NWR on 25 April 2012. He has a nonfunctional transmitter and cannot be tracked.

Female no. 16-10 was last observed with sandhill cranes in Ottawa County, Michigan on 6 May 2012.

We thank John Ward and Charles Murray for ground based tracking assistance. We also thank pilots Bev Paulan and Mike Callahan (Wisconsin DNR); LightHawk (www.lighthawk.org) and pilot Jamie Gamble; Windway Aviation Inc; and pilots Tim Barzen and Bill Murphy for aerial tracking assistance.

Map of Whooping Crane lcoations as of May 1, 2013.

Whooping Crane Update – April 4 to May 1, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, are at unknown locations or that are long term missing.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 106 birds (55 males and 51 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 98 whooping cranes in Wisconsin, 2 in Michigan, 3 at unknown locations, and 3 long term missing.  Male 13-11 who has been missing since fall migration 2011 is now considered dead and is not included in the population totals above.

Mortality

The carcass of female no. 9-10 was collected on her summering territory in Adams County, Wisconsin, on25 April. Death likely occurred around 19 April. Her remains were sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison for necropsy.

Reproduction

Twenty pairs were confirmed with nests between 15 and 29 April.  A list of nesting pairs and estimated initiation dates can be found in the attached document: Nesting Summary – End April 2013.

 

18-03 & 36-09 Nest on April 28 – photo taken with aerial support provided by LightHawk

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 13-12 began migration from the Hiwassee WR in Tennessee on 23 April. PTT readings placed her in Orange/Martin Counties, Indiana that night. She continued north into Putnam County, Indiana, on 24/25 April and completed migration to Dane County, Wisconsin on 1 May.

No. 14-12 remained with sandhill cranes in Volusia County, Florida, through at least last report on 18 April. He was reported in Berrien County, Michigan, on 23 April and moved to Allegan County, Michigan by 30 April where he remains.

No. 15-12 was reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late February or early March. No subsequent reports.

No. 16-12 remained in Hendry County, Florida, through at least last report on 9 April. He was next reported in Dodge County, Wisconsin, on 29 April where he remains.

Ultralight (UL)

Nos. 4-12, 5-12 and 7-12 left the pensite at the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida on 10 March. They were reported in Sauk County, Wisconsin on 19 April. Female no. 7-12 sustained an injury to her left leg/foot but has steadily been improving. Nos. 4-12 and 5-12 apparently left the area between 25-27 April and have not yet been relocated.

No. 11-12 left the pensite on 9 February.  No subsequent reports.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 13-11 (DAR) was last detected migrating south over NE Illinois on 29 November 2011.  He is now considered dead and is not included in the population totals above.

Female no. 3-10 was last detected on her wintering grounds in Marion County, Florida, on 22 February 2012.

Male no. 12-07 was last observed on the Necedah NWR on 25 April 2012. He has a nonfunctional transmitter and cannot be tracked.

Female no. 16-10 was last observed with sandhill cranes in Ottawa County, Michigan on 6 May 2012.

This update is a product of the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership.  To access our previous project updates and additional information on the project visit our web site at http://www.bringbackthecranes. org/.

We thank John Ward and Charles Murray for ground based tracking assistance. We also thank pilots Bev Paulan and Mike Callahan (Wisconsin DNR); LightHawk (www.lighthawk.org) and pilot Jamie Gamble; Windway Aviation Inc; and pilots Tim Barzen and Bill Murphy for aerial tracking assistance.


Whooping Crane Update – March 6 to April 3, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, are at unknown locations or that are long term missing. It does include birds that may have left wintering or migration stopover locations within the last couple of days.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 108 birds (56 males and 52 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 84 whooping cranes in Wisconsin, 2 in Illinois, 8 in Indiana, 1 in Tennessee, 3 in Florida, 6 at unknown locations, and 4 long term missing.

Whooping cranes on frozen river in Wisconsin, late March 2013.

Whooping cranes that returned to Wisconsin in late March found ice and snow.

Photo by Wisconsin DNR; Bev Paulan

2011 Cohort

Estimated distribution at the end of the report period is as follows:

14 in Wisconsin, 1 in Florida, 1 in Illinois and 1 long-term missing.

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 13-12 remains in Meigs & Rhea Counties, Tennessee, with a couple of sandhill cranes.

No. 14-12 remained with sandhill cranes in Volusia County, Florida, through at least last report on 28 March.

No. 15-12 was reported possibly leaving on migration with sandhill cranes from Hendry County, Florida, in late February or early March. No subsequent reports.

No. 16-12 was relocated in Hendry County, Florida, on 24 March and remained through at least last report on 27 March.

Ultralight (UL)

Nos. 4-12, 5-12 and 7-12 left the pensite at the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida on 10 March. No subsequent reports

No. 11-12 left the pensite on 9 February.  No subsequent reports.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 13-11 (DAR) was last detected migrating south over NE Illinois on 29 November 2011.

Female no. 3-10 was last detected on her wintering grounds in Marion County, Florida, on 22 February 2012.

Male no. 12-07 was last observed on the Necedah NWR on 25 April 2012. He has a nonfunctional transmitter and cannot be tracked.

Female no. 16-10 was last observed with sandhill cranes in Ottawa County, Michigan on 6 May 2012.

We thank Travis Stoelting (Indiana DNR), Dan Kaiser, John Pohl, Susan Braun, John Ward, Charles Murray and Rick Houlk for ground based tracking assistance. We also thank the Wisconsin DNR and pilots Bev Paulan, Luke Wuest and Michael Callahan for aerial tracking assistance.

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Whooping Crane Update – February 4 to March 5, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, have left a previous location and have not been relocated, or that are long term missing.  Updated band and transmitter information can be found in the attached document.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 108 birds (56 males and 52 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included 54 whooping cranes in Indiana, 9 in Florida, 12 in Alabama, 7 in Tennessee, 6 in Illinois, 8 in Kentucky, 3 in Georgia, 3 at unknown locations, 4 not recently reported, and 2 long term missing.

Juvenile crane in Tennessee.

Juvenile crane in Tennessee.

Photo by ICF; Eva Szyszkoski

Mortalities

The remains of male no. 21-10 were discovered on his wintering territory in Meigs County, Tennessee, on 10 February. Based on tracking information, death likely had occurred on 2 February.

The remains of Direct Autumn Release juveniles nos. 12-12 (male) and 17-12 (female) were collected from their wintering territory in Hendry County, Florida, in mid-February. Death had likely occurred in late December or January.

All remains were sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison for necropsy.

Update on Injured Bird

After amputation of her right middle toe and rehabilitation at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Direct Autumn Release female no. 13-12 was released  in Meigs County, Tennessee, on 9 February in the presence of at least 4 adult whooping cranes and hundreds of sandhill cranes. She remains in the area and was observed associating with a small group of sandhill cranes in early March.

2011 Cohort

Estimated distribution at the end of the report period is as follows: 10 in Alabama, 4 in Indiana, 1 in Illinois, 1 at an unknown location and 1 long-term missing.

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 13-12 remains in Meigs & Rhea Counties, Tennessee, after being release there on 9 February (see above).

No. 15-12 was captured from a neighborhood in Broward County, Florida, on 10 February and released in Hendry County later that day. He remained in Hendry County through at least 20 February. [Information received on 8 March indicated that he may have migrated with sandhills in late February or early March, but this has not been confirmed].

No. 14-12 remains with sandhills in Volusia County, Florida.

No. 16-12 apparently moved from his previous location in Hendry County, Florida. He has not been relocated.

Ultralight (UL)

The four UL juveniles remained at the pen site on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida, until roosting at an undetermined location on the night of 9 February. Two birds returned to the pen site the following morning, and one bird returned to the pen by the afternoon of 13 February. Female no. 11-12 remains missing.

Long Term Missing

Male no. 13-11 (DAR) was last detected migrating south over NE Illinois on 29 November 2011.

Female no. 3-10 was last detected on her wintering grounds in Marion County, Florida, on 22 February 2012.

We thank Travis Stoelting (Indiana DNR), Dan Kaiser, John Pohl, Susan Braun, John Ward, Charles Murray and Rick Houlk for tracking assistance, the staff at Disney for the care and transport of no. 13-12 and Jeannette Parker and Ricardo Zambrano (Florida FWCC) for capture and relocation of no. 15-12.

We also thank Windway Aviation and pilot Rob Siedl for aerial tracking assistance in January 2013.

Map of whooping crane locations at the end of February 2013.


Whooping Crane Update – January 5 to February 3, 2013

The map below indicates the last known location of the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern Migratory Population. This map does not include birds that have not been reported for over one month, have left a previous location and have not been relocated, or that are long term missing.

General

Maximum size of the eastern migratory population at the end of the report period was 111 birds (58 males and 53 females). Estimated distribution at the end of the report period or last record included:

45 whooping cranes in Indiana, 15 in Florida, 16 in Alabama, 11 in Tennessee, 6 in Illinois, 8 in Kentucky, 3 in Georgia, 1 at an unknown location, 4 not recently reported, and 2 long term missing.

Females nos. 27-07 and 13-08 who have both been missing since spring of 2011 are now considered dead and have been removed from the population totals above.

Three juvenile whooping cranes under a live oak in Florida.

These are first-year whooping cranes, Direct Autumn Released in 2012, in Florida.

Photo provided courtesy of Hendry-Glades AudubonSociety

Mortality

Ultralight female no. 6-12 was killed near the pen site on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida on the morning of 3 February. Predation by a bobcat is suspected based on field observations. Her carcass has been sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison for necropsy.

Injury

Direct Autumn Release female no. 13-12 was reported with a an undetermined leg injury on 7 January in Broward County, Florida. Over the course of the next couple weeks, observers reported that the severity of her limp was diminishing.  PTT readings indicated location points in a nearby neighborhood by 13 January. On 25 January she was observed in the neighborhood and was reported as acting very listless and sitting down a lot with an injury to her right foot. She was captured on 26 January and transported to Disney’s Animal Kingdom where her right middle toe was amputated. She remained at Disney through the rest of the report period and continues to improve. The current plan is to re-release her back into the wild.

Special thanks to Jeannette Parker and Disney Animal Kingdom’s Steve Baynes, Scott Tidmus, Scott Terrell, Deidre Fontenot and other staff members for capture, transport, veterinary support and continued care of this bird.

2011 Cohort

Estimated distribution at the end of the report period is as follows: Twelve in Alabama, two in Tennessee, one in Illinois, one at an unknown location and one long-term missing.

2012 Cohort

Direct Autumn Release (DAR)

No. 12-12 has not been detected since being reported with a possible leg injury in Hendry County, Florida, on 28 December 2012.

Nos. 13 and 15-12 remained in Broward County, Florida, until no. 13-12 was captured due to injury (see above). No. 15-12 remains in the area.

No. 14-12 remains with sandhills in Volusia County, Florida.

Nos. 16-12 and 17-12 remain in Hendry County, Florida, previously reported as associating with each other on only a few occasions. No. 17-12 has not been reported for a few weeks however PTT information received on the night of 25 January indicated that she was still in the area.

Ultralight (UL)

The UL juveniles remained at the pen site on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida, throughout the report period. No older birds were detected in the area and all juveniles roosted in the pen each night. No. 6-12 was killed on the morning of 3 February (see above), reducing the number of juveniles to four.

Long Term Missing

Female no. 27-07 was last reported with sandhills on her usual summering area E of Etna Green, Kosciusko County, Indiana, on the evening of 13 March 2011. Her transmitter is suspected to be nonfunctional. She is now considered dead and has been removed from the population totals above.

Female no. 13-08 was last detected in flight near Necedah NWR, Juneau County, Wisconsin, on 6 April 2011. She is now considered dead and has been removed from the population totals above.

Male no. 13-11 (DAR) was last detected migrating south over NE Illinois on 29 November 2011.

Female no. 3-10 was last detected on her wintering grounds in Marion County, Florida, on 22 February 2012.

This update is a product of the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership.

We thank Travis Stoelting (Indiana DNR), Dan Kaiser, John Pohl, Susan Braun, John Ward, Charles Murray and Rick Houlk for tracking assistance.

 


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