Pat Hatch's PhotoJournal

My New Hangar Mates

So I was out working on my airplane yesterday and these guys just happened by. They were pretty unconcerned with my presence, except for the little ones who were quite shy and wanted to hide behind mom and dad. It's interesting that the chicks obviously can't fly yet so the adults must be camping out nearby. I think this is the same family that I saw about a year ago.

A Sandhill Crane Family

What's ironic is that these birds are extremely dangerous around airplanes; one, they are quite large and have been known to bring down an airplane in a collision; and, two, they seem to have no fear of the human element. So I guess their attitude is, "well we were here first, deal with it."

They are quite beautiful creatures. They gobble like a turkey would, but different sounding. They seem to be feeding on grubs or other insects and every so often will hand (beak) one to an infant, who seem to be doing more observing than anything else.

Here's a closeup of an adult:

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