Registration Is Open for California Sandhill Crane Tours

Sand Hill Cranes
California Sand Hill Cranes

California Department of Fish and WildlifeUSA -( The online registration period is now open for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (CDFW) popular Sandhill Crane Wetland Tours at the Woodbridge Ecological Reserve near Lodi in San Joaquin County.

Online registration is required to participate in these late-afternoon guided tours, which start in October and run through February. The tours take place the first through third Saturdays and Sundays of each month for five months during the cranes’ fall and winter stay in California’s Central Valley. Online registration is available up to eight weeks in advance.

Registration opened in mid-August for October tour dates and in mid-September for November dates. More information about the tours is available online.

As of Nov. 14, 2017, those 16 and older attending the tours will be required to purchase and possess a CDFW lands pass in order to participate. Visitors carrying a valid hunting or fishing license will be exempt from this new requirement. Signs will be posted at the Woodbridge Ecological Reserve notifying visitors of the need for a lands pass, and tour docents will be checking for passes or licenses at the start of each tour.  A daily lands pass costs $4.32 and an annual lands pass costs $24.33.

Lands passes may be purchased online, by phone at (800) 565-1458, and in-person wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold (locations at

Lands pass fees will be used for the management of this and other CDFW lands. For more information about lands passes, please visit

The Woodbridge Ecological Reserve, northeast of Lodi, is a popular spot for viewing the Pacific Flyway’s greater and lesser sandhill cranes returning to California’s Central Valley. The reserve is also known as the Isenberg Crane Reserve, named after former Congressman Phil Isenberg, who was instrumental in conserving the land.

The Woodbridge Ecological Reserve is also accessible to the public at any time for self-guided tours. A series of informative interpretive panels at the reserve’s south unit at 11154 W. Woodbridge Road in Lodi offers good visitor support. Staying until sundown is recommended for witnessing the sights and sounds associated with “fly-over” and the cranes’ return to their evening roosting spots.

CDFW is also proud to co-sponsor the Lodi Sandhill Crane Festival scheduled for Nov. 3-5. Information about festival tours and activities is available at

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Gary Benoit

The problem is, this would entail leaving civilization and going to California, and that dog won’t hunt.


Only in California do you need permission to view wild life.

We here in Wisconsin are beginning to get over run with sand hill cranes so much they are considering making them game birds.

Just drive down most any country road and at times in the fall you can see 100’s.

Wild Bill

, Is the Sandhill Crane good to eat? Anyone, here, ever cook a Sandhill Crane?


I have friends who refer to sandhills as “ribeye in the sky”. Does that tell you anything?

Wild Bill

@Gryfdaddy, It tells me that one of your friends might have a recipe, that I could mess up!

Wild Bill

@OV, The eating other birds’ eggs and young doesn’t sound good. I bet the Quail Forever people have a hard time with that.
I see Rino Bob Corcker has decided to retire rather than suffer defeat in the next Repub primary.

Wild Bill

The California ban on internet sales of ammunition begins 1 January 2018. So you better order, now or you will be vacationing where you can buy ammunitions and haul it home yourself. It will be called AmmoTourism. Shady characters wearing Groucho Marx mustaches will be selling ammunition out of their trunk under the bridge at Venice Blvd and National. At Christmas, your relatives will send a box of .22.LR hidden in the fruit cake with the metal can, to fool the USPS X-ray machine. Former drug smugglers in submarines will surface at Catalina and unload ammo cases by moon light… Read more »


W. Bill, that is a good one but could be very true. As far as sand hill cranes, they probably taste like chicken.

Wild Bill

, I’ve heard that somewhere before… Oh yeah, rattlesnakes. My Texas neighbors thought that it would be a real hoot to get me to think rattlesnake tasted like chicken.


@ W. Bill, everything you try tastes like chicken. I was told once that snapping turtles tasted like chicken. I caught one crossing the road one day, threw him in the trunk of my car and took him home. He was not happy but when we cut his head off and got him out of his shell he didn’t care anymore. He didn’t taste like chicken. What does rattlesnake taste like? By the way, your comment about rino Corker retiring is a good thing. He started out good but the swamp got to him. Tennessee doesn’t have a good conservative… Read more »

Wild Bill

, Well, I’m pretty sure that it does not fast like chicken. Personally, I put it in Chili con Carne, so that I never really find out for sure!


Perhaps you should stop bragging about the illegal sex acts you commit with them… just sayin”

Wild Bill

@OV, little Xcrement Xcrement, has a bright and certain future as an AIDs patient.