Ryan’s Field Notes #9 – A look at the Sandhill Crane

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Ryan’s Field Notes #9 – A look at the Sandhill Crane
Since I was a child I remember gazing up into the blue sky, straining my eyes to see the flock of cranes that I could faintly hear as their unique calls filtered down from above.
The sandhill crane migrates through Colorado every fall and spring. 

A social bird that travel in flocks their unique but pleasant calls can be heard for a long ways as they fly above. 

Sometimes when one hears them you will look up into the blue sky above and high, high above you can faintly see the dots as they fly.  It always amazes me how high they sometimes soar.

Unique in appearance I find them to be a combination of awkward but somewhat graceful. 

A zoom lens is necessary in trying to capture these birds, they are a very wary creature and are difficult to get really close to. 

They love the marsh lands and wet lands but can also many times be found in corn fields feeding during the day. 
It is a hard thing for me to put my finger on but I find that I have a difficult time capturing images of the crane that I am happy with.  Especially when they are on the ground.

I am not sure if it’s their lanky body or the grey body that blends in to their surroundings, something about them creates a challenge for me that I do not find with many other types of animals.

In flight the V pattern of the flock with their legs trailing behind is an easier capture.  That can still be difficult though. 

I love it when I can get an image where their wings are in in various positions of flight versus all being on the down stroke. 
With any waterfowl, I do believe my favorite images are of them silhouetted against the sun set as they fly to roost for the night. 

Thank you all for checking out this weeks Field Notes.  See you next week.

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