Total Pageviews

Apr 11, 2015

The long slow climb back for the Whooping Crane

Photo-Canadian Wildlife Federation
In recognition of National Wildlife Week (April 5-12), the Canadian Wildlife Federation has chosen to feature the Whooping Crane in its April 2015 Update (see photo above).   Any modern-day article about 'whoopers' dwells on the seemingly interminable comeback by these huge birds from the brink of extinction, in the 1940s. For my own information I decided to put together a bit of a time-line for the life of this species, from just before the arrival of Europeans in North America to the present.   I checked dozens and dozens of sources and what follows is an admitted random amalgamation of dates and numbers.   Hopefully, there is an acceptable degree of accuracy in the info.

1700  - 10,000 to 20,ooo birds
1860  - 1,400 birds
1870  - 1,300 birds
1940  - 23 birds
1950  - 16 birds
1967  - birds declared 'Endangered'
1970  - 57 birds
1995  - 149 birds
2000 - 260 birds
2003 - 306 birds
2007 - 485 birds
2008 - 523 Birds
2011   - 600 Birds

It's said birdwatching requires a lot of patience.   It is especially so watching a species like the Whopping Crane flying so low and slow, through the last 65 years.   I like to think of those bird-lovers who are helping the Whoopers to return, are also preserving the sanctity of all life.   We all must do our part, but first we must make sure there is a healthy place for all of us on this planet.
Please comment if you wish.

No comments: