Today is day ten of Operation Migration's Class of 2014's inaugural migration to Florida. As with every migration, it's the weather that determine if the cranes fly. Unfortunately, Mother Nature has not cooperated, and the cranes have been grounded since day two, having flown only nineteen miles.
When I woke up this morning, I was hoping to report that the birds took to the air. Not so; they are still in Marquette County, Wisconsin, but what a beautiful place for a layover.
So, instead of writing about a liftoff, I reflected on the month of October. It's one of my favorites.
*It's the time of year when leaves seem to burst into flaming colors overnight.
*It's the time of year when the weather turns crisp and cool, providing relief from the summer's heat.
*It's the time of year when we plant ourselves in front of the TV, choose a team (when ours isn't in the running), and watch the World Series.
*It's the time of year when migratory birds arrive in my area: snow geese, Harlequin ducks, wood ducks, Western grebes, pied-billed grebes, golden-eyes, brants, scoters, Northern pintails, and loons. I've even spotted a small flock of black turnstones.
*It's also the time when my migratory genes kick in and I start to look for cheap flights south to my
home state of Texas.
|Photo taken from OM's website|
But, back to the cranes. Despite being on the ground, the OM crew is busy. Visit Operation Migration's website for some entertaining, educational, and motivational information on life with the whoopers.
October 18--"Flying in Formation": Joe Duff posted an excellent explanation of the physics of flight.
October 15 --"The Mouseketeer Club": Read Brooke Pennypackers' humorous account of the mice bloom that occurred in White River Marsh this year.
October 13 -- "Somebody's Gotta Do It": Watch a preview of Mike Rowe's new show on CNN. He's visiting USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research where he gets a taste of what it is like working with the young chicks.
October 12 -- "Message from a Costumed Handler": Doug Pellerin writes about the progress of little Peanut (#4-14), the only boy in the flock. Check out the video of Peanut attacking his first pumpkin.
So, you see, there's a lot going on with my favorite birds and the folks to tend to them.
Labels: #audubon #whooping cranes cranes, #St. Mark's National Wildlife Refuge, Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, birders, birding, birds, endangered species, Operation Migration