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Today was the annual Midwest Crane Count. For the past ten years I’ve been counting at Gilbert Creek Wildlife Area which is not far from my farm. Counting cranes is a great spring activity and if you are interested in participating next year check out their website. The crane count is one day in mid April each year and runs from 5:30 to 7:30 in the morning. This morning I had been looking and listening for cranes for over an hour and a half and still had not seen or heard any. I decided to make one last pass through the area when I spotted two of them in a small pond. I’m not sure where they had been earlier. I had been past the pond several times and still had not seen them.

Sandhill Cranes

Sandhill Cranes

Birds of Prey were also around. I saw several Red-tailed Hawks and was able to get some nice photos of a Bald Eagle who posed for me on a tree next to the road.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

 

This year there were quite a few birds to be seen. Lots of Canada Geese, a variety of ducks including Mallards and Blue-winged Teal.

Canada Geese

Canada Geese

There were also a variety of smaller birds around including lots of Red-winged Blackbirds, Killdeer and Eastern Phoebes.

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird

More photos from Gilbert Creek Wildlife Area can be found on my website.

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