Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Lesser is Sometimes Greater

Sandhill Cranes (Grus canadensis) 
Among the hundreds of thousands of migrating sandhill cranes now converging on the
Platte River Valley in Nebraska are several subspecies including the greater and lesser sandhill cranes.
The greater cranes are a little taller (4 to 5 feet) and slightly heavier (10-12 lbs)  than the their lesser cousins.
It's estimated that the lessers represent 90% of the total sandhill cranes passing through.
It is such a pleasure to get into the mix of their migration and experience their large numbers in the evening as they return to roost along the river valley and then to catch them again the next morning at dawn as these large graceful birds suddenly make for the heavens with a deafening cacophony of chatter.
It is truly one of nature's premier spectacles.

ABC Wednesday     Wild Bird Wednesday    


Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Wonderful. I have never had the privilege of meeting birds like these.

RedPat said...

Wow - you are so lucky to see these wonderful birds!

Reader Wil said...

You are right lesser is sometimes more important than greater.
Thanks for the information.
Have a great week.
Wil, ABCW Team.

Roger Owen Green said...

Interesting differentiation


Small City Scenes said...

Whoa!! Those birds are amazing. What a great shot. I have never seen one up close and personal. They are in EW but not here. (I don't think so anyway) MB

Stewart M said...

Splendid pictures - I would like to see one of these birds - regardless of the sub-species.

Cheers and thanks for linking to WBW- Stewart M - Melbourne

Marie said...

Beautiful photo! How wonderful that you are enjoying their migration!

JM said...

Fabulous capture! I saw this gorgeous bird for the first time in India.

Wally Jones said...

Very nice photograph of a beautiful bird!
I can't imagine the numbers of cranes you get to experience!
We have a large population of migrants in the winter and also a resident group which breeds in Florida.
Love hearing their calls.

Anonymous said...

It would be an amazing thing to witness! I had no idea cranes could be 4-5 feet tall. And it's a wonderful photo as well!