Whooping Cranes: Fruitful & Multiplying

Passport to Texas from Texas Parks and Wildlife and the Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program

The saying, slow and steady wins the race, applies to the recovery of endangered Whooping Cranes. From sixteen birds in the mid twentieth century, the migrating flock today has more than 200 members.

Last year we had 266 whooping cranes that arrived on the Texas coast. That included some adults and some young.

Wildlife biologist Lee Ann Linam says this wild flock, which winters at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, returns to Canada each spring to nest and raise young—and this year they were prolific.

When the birds returned to Canada, they formed at least 66 nests. And from that we hope that perhaps we will have thirty young or so make it down. Maybe we’ll hit another record this year—getting close to the 300 mark.

This wild population has been so productive that eggs from it have enabled researchers to try additional recovery efforts.

There are Whooping cranes in captivity to provide some insurance against loss, and to perhaps aid in some restoration programs. And we have a couple of experimental populations. And so, all total about five hundred whooping cranes exist.

Find links to more information about Whooping Cranes when you visit passporttotexas.org. That’s our show for today, with support from the Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program… providing funding for the Private Lands and Habitat Enhancement Program For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Aransas National Wildlife Refuge

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