Sunday's for the Birds: Meet the Class of 2014--Five Tough Gals and One Little Peanut.

If my father were still alive, I'm sure he would sympathize with the Operation Migration crew that is in charge of caring for, raising, and training this year's flock of whooping crane chicks. There are four girls in our family (plus my mom); no boys. Dad used to always say he lived with five bosses.
This year's class is made up of five feisty girls, the oldest gal, whose nickname is Maxine, and her
Call me Peanut.
sister, Aiden, plus two more girls, and one shy, little fellow named Peanut. They are still socializing at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland and will soon begin their flight training in White River Marsh in Wisconsin. In the meantime, the chicks are hanging out near a pond, gorging on grubs and challenging one another. The youngest, number 10-14, has decided that her space is very important and any chick who doesn't respect her territory is in big trouble. 
Chick number 3-14 recently put the scare into everyone by disappearing, at least they thought she'd disappeared. After an extensive search of the area, she was discovered lounging in number 2-14's pen, while 2-14 was getting a tan under the heat lamp.
Stay tuned for an update soon. Anything can happen! My prediction: little Peanut will rise to the occasion and rule the roost.

For more information about life with cranes, read Brooke Pennypacker's blog post, "Man's World -- Not!"

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