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cranes

History is made!

I am delighted to announce that some of the cranes released through the reintroduction project have raised their own chicks to fledging. This is the first time cranes have produced their own fledged young in the South West for over 400 years - quite an achievement!

 

One of the chicks  - flying for the first time! (photo John Crispin)

Whole lotta buglin' going on

 

 Photo - John Crispin.

Amazing sights and sounds here in Somerset... with lots of ritual strutting and bugling going on...

The cranes have been mostly on Wetmoor in recent days... best viewed  from the public footpath that runs along the South side of the River Yeo to the East of Langport.

Where are they now?

Through November, the group of around 70 birds in Somerset broke up into smaller units with birds being seen on maize stubbles and pasture near the river Yeo to the east of Long Load, on Aller Moor and on Southlake Moor. A group of around 40 have started regularly visiting Aller Moor where the banks of the River Parrett give an elevated position and better chance of seeing them. Try walking part of the River Parrett trail between Oath footbridge and Willow Bridge at Stathe.

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" The Flying V "

Schools Crane Twinning Project!

In his last blog Damon talked about his recent visit to Brandenburg in Germany which is the area where the crane eggs that are brought to Slimbridge come from so the Great Crane project has very important links with the team and area out there.

Catchers in the Rye

I have just returned from a wonderful week in the Schorfheide-Chorin Biosphere Reserve, Brandenburg, Germany  - helping the team there to catch and ring wild crane chicks. 

     

Eberhard and myself with a young crane            Cornflowers in the Rye crops

Monty & Chris' chick is getting big!

Monty with chick

 Monty with his chick - late May.

Monty and Chris, the pair of released cranes that have successfully nested at Slimbridge in Gloucestershire this year are currently very busy rearing a feisty young crane that will soon be 20 days old!  The young bird is one of two that hatched from Monty and Chris's clutch on 17th May.  Sadly, its sibling was taken by a fox at around 1 week old.

Manfred takes a trip

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Somerset's very own soap opera

The cranes have been VERY busy over the last couple of weeks.

 Tamsin on Timmy - Early March 2014

We have seen some of last year's pairings continuing to flourish, some couples spiltting, some rather 'modern' trios of birds forming, a number of new romances blossoming as well as a good number of fleeting dalliancies.