Flight of the Cranes

There is nothing in the world that can prepare you for seeing a Sandhill Crane in flight!  This 'artistic' rendition of some Sandhill Cranes floating down to earth is just a heavily Photoshop-edited photograph, but I liked it so much I had it printed and I hung it on my wall.  I love having a memento of the day I saw 10,000 Sandhill Cranes!

Sandhill Cranes FLOAT!  Seriously!  They are huge birds, but they hang in the air and gently float to earth like a child's balloon drifting out of the sky. It's incredible!

Look at this guy drifting in for a landing.  He doesn't flap or flutter or dive; he just stands still in the sky and ever-so-slowly descends.  Tom shot this series of a single crane in flight, and I think the photos are phenomenal!

Here he is just a little closer to ground . . .

And this is one of my very favorite Sandhill Crane shots - check out the humongous wingspan of this bird as he softly lowers himself to solid ground.  He barely moved a muscle during the entire descent!

Even more surprising is that these gentle giants float UPWARDS, too! When you think of Sandhill Cranes, think of an apparently weightless Muhammad Ali-like bird who 'floats like a butterfly' through the endless skies out west. If you can imagine such a seemingly impossible image, you'll be well prepared for seeing your first Sandhill Crane in flight!


  1. Beautiful picture! Very creative.

  2. They are indeed magnificent creatures. We have been fortunate to see them migrations numerous times in the Platte River valley on the way to visit the grandchildren in Colorado from Minnesota. Great blog!

    1. Thank you so much, troutbirder! I saw the mighty Platte River in October while my daughter and I drove cross-country. It was lovely, but to my dismay I never saw a Sandhill Crane. I've made up for it now, boy!


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