Rare whooping cranes make appearance in Kansas
Pratt, KS -(Ammoland.com)- Four adult whooping cranes were spotted on Oct. 28 at Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area in Barton County but were gone by the next day.
They are part of the only sustaining wild population estimated at 250 birds. Whooping cranes from this population will fly through the state in upcoming weeks, making their way to wintering grounds at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge on the Texas Gulf Coast.
Records indicate that most whooping cranes will pass through Kansas between Oct. 17 and Nov. 10, usually travelling in small family groups. It’s not uncommon for the 5-foot-tall birds to stop for rest and food at Cheyenne Bottoms and Quivira National Wildlife Refuge on their way through.
As part of a cooperative monitoring program supervised by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) encourages anyone who spots a whooper to contact their local KDWPT office. Sighting information can be used to alert managers of key areas along the flyway — such as Quivira and Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area in central Kansas — and to provide sighting records for the Whooping Crane Recovery Plan and for whooping crane research in the U.S. and Canada.
For more information, visit the USFWS website at www.fws.gov/midwest/whoopingcrane.
About the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT)
Fish, wildlife and outdoor recreation are important to the quality of life for all Kansans and to the Kansas economy. As a public steward of the Kansas natural resources, the mission of the Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism is to: Conserve and enhance Kansas natural heritage, its wildlife and its habitats–to assure future generations the benefits of the state’s diverse, living resources; Provide the public with opportunities for the use and appreciation of the natural resources of Kansas, consistent with the conservation of those resources; Inform the public of the status of the natural resources of Kansas to promote understanding and gain assistance in achieving this mission.