[Tweeters] re: Sandhill Cranes are back in force!

Rod Gilbert rodgilbert1 at comcast.net
Thu Mar 13 06:12:46 PDT 2014

Hi Tweets,

We were returning from Yellowstone along I 90 yesterday and decided to stop by Potholes for some lunch and check out what was around. It was a beautiful day with light winds and not a cloud in the sky. We decided to stop at Soda Lake and as soon as we got out of the truck we heard a cacophony of birds calling up in the sky. We turned and saw three huge flocks of Sandhill Cranes catching the thermals, all calling constantly as they swayed and swirled on the warming winds. They were rising above Marsh Unit 1 just to the west of Soda Lake. We estimated that there were between 1000 and 1500 birds. It was a very cool sight, but especially the sound that they made that filled the air, that will stay with me for a long while (thanks to video on smart phones).

Rod Gilbert

>>Hi, Tweeters!

I was fly fishing out in eastern WA yesterday (Thursday) and saw numerous small flocks of Sandhill Cranes flying overhead (the flocks were composed of 10 to 30 birds). I wasn’t counting, but I’d guess I saw around 300 Sandhill Cranes total during the five hours I was fishing. I was fly fishing Powerline Lake (a few miles south of Scooteney Reservoir, southeast of Othello), and the Sandhill Cranes seemed to be congregating north of Powerline Lake, maybe in the water just west of Camp Lakes. I can’t be positive about the location, as the small flocks were flying every which way, but generally they seemed to be going in that direction and the majority of calls I heard came from that direction.  Just love the ancient-sounding guttural calls of those cranes!
Good birding!
Rex Takasugi
Kent, WA - See more at: http://birding.aba.org/message.php?mesid=642524&MLID=WA&MLNM=Washington%20Tweeters#sthash.KD16SrAN.dpuf

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