Whooping Crane Eastern Population Update – September 2021 - International Crane Foundation

International Crane Foundation

 

Whooping Crane Eastern Population Update – September 2021

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Whooping Crane family 4-12, 3-14 and chick W2-21 (center) strike a pose in Green Lake County, Wisconsin. W2-21 is the year’s oldest surviving wild-hatched chick. Photo by Doug Pellerin.

Below is the most recent update for the Eastern Migratory Population of Whooping Cranes. In the last month, three more wild-hatched chicks have fledged! 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 78 (37 F, 37 M, 4 U). This now includes this year’s four wild-hatched chicks. Nineteen of these 78 individuals are wild-hatched and the rest are captive-reared. To the best of our knowledge, as of 1 September, there are at least 68 Whooping Cranes in Wisconsin and two in Michigan. 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 Wild-hatched Cohort

Nesting season is complete and there were 14 chicks confirmed to have hatched and up to four are still alive (see below).

W2-21 (U) hatched to parents 3-14 and 4-12 in Green Lake County, WI, at the beginning of May and fledged in July.

W10-21 (U) hatched to parents 12-03 and 12-05 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County, WI, and fledged mid-August.

W11-21 (M) hatched to parents 36-09 and 18-03 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County, WI, and fledged mid-August.

W14-21 (M) hatched to parents 25-09 and 2-04 at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Juneau County, WI, and fledged in late August.

2020 Cohort

W3-20 (F) was last seen in Taylor Co, WI in late May.

W13-20 (M) is in Dodge Co, WI, with 74-18 (M) and sometimes 16-11 (M) and 79-19 (F).

W14-20 (M) is still in Juneau Co, WI, and has been seen with W6-18 (M).

W18-20 (F) and 80-19 (F) showed up in Fond du Lac Co, WI during August.

2019 Cohort

W1-19 (F) is in Portage Co, WI with 1-17 (M).

W14-19 (F) was last seen in Juneau Co, WI, with W14-20 (M) and W6-18 (M) during July.

W19-19 (U) was last seen in Juneau Co, WI, with W10-18 (U) during July.

79-19 (F) is in Dodge County, WI with 16-11 (M) and sometimes 74-18 (M) and W13-20 (M).

80-19 (F) and W18-20 (F) showed up in Fond du Lac Co, WI during August.

Mortality

None known during August.

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