An old English proverb states “the eyes are the window to the soul.” In my line of work, the eyes are sometimes a window into the health of a patient. Though the eyes may not be the most prominent feature of cranes, compared to raptors for instance, the cranes do show beautiful diversity in eye color, and have a predictable shape and relationship to the form of the skull. When changes occur in this presentation, the observant among us know something could be wrong.
Among the many interesting activities I was involved in during my experience with ICF, traveling to Horicon National Wildlife Refuge to examine a Direct Autumn Release Whooping Cane chick was a highlight.
Those of us who work directly with the cranes at ICF often are asked how the birds deal with the cold of Wisconsin winters. This year we have had more questions on how the cranes deal with the abnormally high temperatures Wisconsin endured this summer.
In early August, ICF veterinarian Dr. Barry Hartup participated in his third annual research trip to western Canada to band wild Whooping Crane chicks on their remote summering area at Wood Buffalo National Park.