If you think our Birdorable birds are cute as adults, what about when they are babies? Below are some baby photos (shared via Flickr Creative Commons) of the Whooping Crane.
The Whooping Crane is a critically endangered species. The tallest bird in North America has a wild population of just over 430 birds as of 2011. Conservation efforts to save this species include reintroduction of birds in an eastern flyway, where juveniles are taught a migration route from Wisconsin to Florida by ultralight plane each year. These birds are bred in captivity. An experimental non-migratory population is being introduced in Louisiana; one of the below photos shows these birds being released from a pen.
Whooping Cranes typically lay 1 to 3 eggs per clutch. They nest near water and both adults incubate the eggs. Hatching occurs after about 32 days of incubation. Juvenile Whooping Cranes typically stay with their parents up until the return migration the spring following their hatching.
Whooping Crane Chick and Adults by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Midwest Region
Adult Whooping Crane and Chick by USFWS Headquarters
Whooping Crane Chick by USFWS Headquarters
USGS_Patuxent_Whooper by USDAgov
Sara Zimorski in Whooping Crane Costume by USFWS Headquarters
Whooping Crane Reintroduction by Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Juvenile Whooping Cranes Forage on Wheeler NWR by USFWS/Southeast
Pretty cute, right? Be sure to check out our Birdorable Whooping Crane t-shirts and gifts!