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The sandhill crane (grus canadensis) can be found from northern Canada across to Alaska and eastern Siberia and a far south as Mexico, the southern United States and Cuba. There are seen rarely in China, Korea and Japan, and very rarely in Europe. There are three non-migratry populations: Mississippi, Florida, and Cuba and six migratory populations: eastern flyway, mid-continent flyway, rocky mountain flyway, lower Colorado River flyway, central valley flyway, and the Pacific flyway. They migrate from their breeding gounds in the north during the warmer months to the south during winter. you will see them in open grasslands, meadows, seed fields, and shallow fresh water marshes.
Sandhill cranes are large heaby bodied birds with long necks and legs. They stand up to four feet tall and have a wingspan from between five feet five inches and seven feet six inches. They have a long dark pointed bill, black legs and a short drooping tail. The body is slate gray with rusty undertones on the belly, white cheeks, and a red forehead. The chicks are yellow with rusty orange accents. Great soaring birds, they hold their necks straight in from of them and trail their legs behind. They can live up to 35 years in the wild and form flocks of over 10,000 birds during migration.
Title: Just The Two Of Us
Title: Fluffy Golf Ball BW
Title: Fluffy Crane
Title: Sandhill Crane Breakfast
The cranes main diet consists of seeds and berries, but also eats small mammals, insects, snails, grubs, snakes, reptiles, amphibians, etcetera, depending on availability. They forage in grain fields, open grasslands, meadows, and fresh water marshes and bogs and usually nest in mardhes or bogs.
Sandhill cranes are highly gregarious birds, with pairs and families making up the primary social units. They roost in large groups and feed in large flocks.
They are a ground dwelling species and are hunted by fox racoons, coyotes, wolves, cougars bobcats, and lynx from the ground, and ravens, crow, gulls, hawks, great horned owls, and eagles from the air. In Florida and Cuba they also have to contend with alligators and crocodiles. The adults defend against flying predators by jumping and kicking and confront ground predators by advancing with spread wings and hissing, stabing with their beaks and kicking as a last resort.
The sandhill crane has been an inspiration for many artists as noted in the paintings of the Japanese, and native Americans. Their dances have been the inspiration for many of the native Americans and is seen in many ballet moves.
Title: Shaded Respite
Title: Still Yellow
Title: Sandhill Cranes With Chicks
Title: Fluffy Golf Ball
Title: A Walk In The Rain
Title: Juvenile Sandhill Crane
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