Louisiana Welcomes ICF Whooping Cranes

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The four Whooping Crane chicks reared at ICF this year are in Louisiana! The chicks, along with ten additional Whooping Crane chicks hatched at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland, had jet service to Louisiana yesterday thanks to the Windway Capital Corporation. The four chicks were hatched at ICF this spring and sent in August to our partners at Patuxent, where they were prepared for their release at the White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area in southwestern Louisiana.

Partners across the United States have collaborated to prepare the Whooping Crane chicks for release in Louisiana. Pictured, four of the chicks were hatched and spent their first few months at ICF, where they learned the basics of being a crane from costumed caretakers. Photo by Tom Lynn Photography

This year’s decision to contribute chicks to the Louisiana release program rather than the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP) release program in Wisconsin demonstrates how ICF and our partners continuously adapt to find the best ways to contribute to Whooping Crane conservation efforts (click here to learn more about this decision). In the eastern United States, ICF staff members continue to contribute to WCEP through health care and other support for the ultralight-led cranes, monitoring and management of the released birds, and research on how the cranes are using habitats as they return to eastern Wisconsin and begin nesting.

ICF is delighted to participate in this reintroduction effort in Louisiana with our partners, including the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF). Click here to read LDWF’s press release announcing the arrival of the young Whooping Cranes to their state.

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