Sandhill Cranes Going North

Sandhill Crane (Grus canadensis) Flying North, Hannibal, Texas, February 28, 2010 (click to enlarge)

Yesterday, February 28, 2010, as I came back from feeding the horses at 5:50 p.m., I heard the tuk-tuk–tuk-tuk–tuk-tuk of the Sandhill Crane overhead.  The cranes were heading north, about 1,500 feet above ground level.  I first saw them over Hannibal, Texas, six miles to the south of us, and after I got the camera and starting taking pictures, they had flown over the ranch and were two or three miles away to the north.  They were circling and moving north at the same time.  Thirty minutes later, another flock of cranes, this group shaped in a V configuration, were flying faster in the same direction.  Their tuk-tuk calls were less frequent.  I suppose they were intent on catching up with the crowd ahead of them who had found, most likely, a good marsh to settle down for the night.  Preferring flight than chat, they sped quietly into dusk.


Filed under Sandhill Crane

8 responses to “Sandhill Cranes Going North

  1. Where I live in the Bosque the Sandhill Cranes fly over area nearly every day. I also hear the tuk-tuk–tuk-tuk–tuk-tuk and view the v shape form as the fly overhead. It is always a welcome site and sound.

  2. And over here in the Rio Grande Valley, yesterday, the 2nd, still large flocks high up midday flying north. Hazy cloud cover made them hard to see, but their what I refer to as ‘warbles’ (but ‘tuk tuk’ does the trick!) belied them. A good reason to stay outside!

    • I agree about the warble description. A good reason to stay outside is right. I thought I heard some this afternoon, but lost the warble in the wind. Yes, large flocks.

  3. Kittie Howard

    Oh, Glory Be, spring comes. Nature’s trumpet is a thing of beauty!

  4. Oh, the “tuk-tuk” call comes from Peterson’s guidebook on western birds. I was trying to replicate their call, gave up and went to his guidebook, but I think C.C. on the warble sound may be closer. Kind of a trilling, too. Reckon there is another source than Peterson on the sound?

  5. I’ve been threatening to do blog posts on both sand hill cranes and buffalo. We seem to be on a similar page… : ) The first time I heard a sand hill crane I thought it was a pterodactyl left over from a Much earlier age… a fascinating sound!

    • Teresa, we are on a similar page. Looking forward to reading your posts on cranes and buffalo. Their migratory pattern is huge, both buffalo and crane. Today, it seems like a spring morning here, but a touch on the cool side.

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