Whooping Crane Eastern Population Update – January 2022

Two adult Whooping Cranes and a juvenile stand near each other in a winter wetland in Indiana. Text: Larry Hampton Photography

Whooping Crane juvenile 84-21, or Ho-Chunk, checks out new pair 19-09 and 6-15 in Gibson County, Indiana, last month. 84-21 was raised at the International Crane Foundation’s headquarters last year and released in central Wisconsin in September.

Below is the most recent update for the Eastern Migratory Population of Whooping Cranes. In the last month, most Whooping Cranes have reached and stayed on their wintering grounds. A huge thank you to the staff of the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Departments of Natural Resources of flyway states, the International Crane Foundation and all the volunteers who help us keep track of the cranes throughout the year. We appreciate your contribution to the recovery of the Whooping Crane Eastern Migratory Population. This report is produced by the International Crane Foundation.

Population Estimate

The current estimated population size is 79 (38 F, 38 M, 3 U). Eighteen of these 79 individuals are wild-hatched and the rest are captive-reared. To the best of our knowledge, as of 1 January, there are 13 Whooping Cranes in Illinois, 34 in Indiana, six in Kentucky, one in Tennessee, 14 in Alabama, three in Georgia and one in Florida. The remaining birds’ locations have not been confirmed in the last month. Their last known locations (in the past month) are on the map below.

Click here to view our interactive “Where are the Whoopers” map for more details, including bios on each of the cranes.

2021 Cohort

W2-21 (U) and parents 3-14 and 4-12 are in Seminole County, GA.

W11-21 (M) and parents 36-09 and 18-03 are in Greene County, IN.

W14-21 (M) is with parents 25-09 and 2-04 in Hopkins County, KY.

84-21 (F) is in Gibson County, IN, where she is with 4-5 other Whooping Cranes.

85-21 (M) is with 67-15 and 3-17 at Wheeler NWR in Morgan County, AL.


2020 Cohort

W3-20 (F) is in Greene County, IN, with W14-19 (F) and a large flock of Whooping Cranes.

W13-20 (M) is in Richland Co, IL, with 74-18 (M). W1-18 (F) is nearby but hasn’t yet been seen with the two males.

W14-20 (M) was last seen in Juneau County, WI, at the end of September.

W18-20 (F) is with 80-19 (F) in Morgan County, AL.


2019 Cohort

W1-19 (F) and 1-17 (M) are in Greene County, IN, with a large flock of Whooping Cranes.

W14-19 (F) is in Greene County, IN, with W3-20 (F) and a large flock of Whooping Cranes.

W19-19 (U) was last seen in Juneau County, WI, in July.

79-19 (F) and 16-11 (M) are in Jasper County, IN.

80-19 (F) is in Morgan County, AL, with W18-20 (F).



None known.


Story submitted by Hillary Thompson, North America Program Crane Analyst. Click here to learn more about our work in North America.