01 April 2012

Sandhill cranes in the Nebraska Sandhills: 22 March

The beginning of our drive across the Nebraska Sandhills and down to the Platte River

It was March. It was crane season on the Platte. This year, we had friends with us for the largest group yet, and the weather was glorious. (Remember we have been frozen in place after standing on our favorite rural bridge in ice and snow.) This year brought early morning fog and mists which cleared into warm, brilliant days.

Thursday was a road day with a long, bright sunset on the bridge. We watched them drift onto the fields and start heading for their site on the North Platte River. (To be continued...)

Sandhill cranes descending at sunset

"Losing air" and tumbling to ensure a stable landing

Coming in over the fields

Flock landing

In flight

Against the clouds

Coming in over the water


A flock low over us

Evening flocks on the horizon

Feeding in the field

The darker one is not a separate subspecies, but just an individual into body painting with mud. They do that. This was once called the Little Brown Crane, but now we know they;re all the same--Lesser Sandhills, in this case

Our car is still there. Year 5. 

And it is, too. 

Swans in the Sandhills

Afternoon clouds

Cranes in the field

More cranes in the field



Dancing cranes

Dancing cranes

Dancing cranes

Looking upstream on the North Platte

More incoming



Sunset group

No comments: