Whooping Crane Videos

Friends of the Wild Whoopers selected four videos to aid our viewers in learning more about whooping cranes and the places they live during winter months. Watch carefully and you will learn how to better identify whoopers and other birds. Hope you enjoy.

Whooping cranes on Texas coast where they live during winter months.
A whooping crane adult pair and their juvenile on Texas coast where they live during winter months.

Whooping Cranes at Aransas Wildlife Refuge – Texas Parks and Wildlife 

The 5-foot-tall whooping crane is the tallest bird in North America and among the rarest. A small but growing flock of whoopers winters on the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, one of the most reliable places in the country to see these unique birds. The video explains problems and needs on Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. Although the video was produced several years ago, the situation is about the same today.



Whooping Whooping Cranes-Texas Parks and Wildlife

Wintering whooping cranes on the Texas coast, foraging and whooping. Excellent photography and interesting whooping crane calls.



Endangered Whooping Cranes – Texas Country Reporter

Only a few hundred whooping cranes exist in the entire world. Tommy Moore and former boat “Captain Ted” will take you on a boat ride to photograph them up close. They have taken thousands of people on trips to see whooping cranes and numerous other species on Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. Enjoy.



Aransas and Matagorda Island National Wildlife Refuges – U.S.F.W.S.

This video describes Aransas and Matagorda island’s wide variety of wildlife, fish and plants. Management practices and general recreational opportunities are explained,


***** FOTWW’s mission is to help preserve and protect the Aransas/Wood Buffalo population of
wild whooping cranes and their habitat
. *****


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The Aransas Project Comments on Court Ruling

The Aransas Project Logo

Friends of the Wild Whoopers is disappointed in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals reversal of the district court’s decision. Yet, it is important to recognize that TAP did win some key aspects of the case. And hopefully TCEQ will seriously reconsider their use of water permits in order to keep the freshwater inflows at a healthy level for the whooping cranes.

July 1, 2014
Charles Irvine, 713-533-1704

Federal court of appeals decision offers roadmap for future cases

Today, The Aransas Project (TAP) announces its analysis of the ruling from the appeals court decision regarding TAP’s legal battle to protect the last naturally migrating flock of endangered whooping cranes. The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, in a narrowly-tailored decision, held that the federal district judge misapplied certain legal theories when it found that the TCEQ was liable for the deaths of 23 endangered and federally-protected Whooping Cranes in 2008-2009. TAP is considering its full range of options including further appellate review.

In a 34-page opinion, a panel of three judges of the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the district court misapplied certain legal standards related to causation in its decision.

TAP prevailed on several aspects of the appeal. First, TAP had legal standing to bring the case. Second, TAP presented compelling evidence that up to twenty-three endangered, federally-protected Whooping cranes actually died in 2008-2009. Third, that federal data supporting TAP’s allegations of deaths by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) Tom Stehn was reliable. Fourth, that TAP presented evidence that the crane deaths were related to lack of essential food, water and other essential habitat requirements. And finally, there was no basis for the district court to abstain to a non-existent and ineffectual state of Texas process.

To read TAP’s entire statement click here.

 ***** FOTWW’s mission is to protect the Aransas/Wood Buffalo population
of wild whooping cranes and their habitat
. *****

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Jerome J. Pratt – Whooping Crane Conservation Awards

Jerome J. Pratt – Whooping Crane Conservation Awards

Friends of the Wild Whoopers would like to congratulate George Archibald and Tom Stehn for being presented the Jerome J. Pratt – Whooping Crane Conservation Awards on April 17, 2014, at the North American Crane Working Group meetings.

George Archibald is the co-founder of the International Crane Foundation and Tom Stehn, who is now retired, was the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Whooping Crane Coordinator and co-chairman of the International Whooping Crane Recovery Team.

The Jerome J. Pratt – Whooping Crane Conservation Award is a lifetime achievement award given to an individual or organization who, through exceptional achievement and dedicated service, have contributed significantly to the conservation and/or collective knowledge of the whooping crane.

Click here to read Whooping Crane Conservation Association‘s full article about the achievements of George Archibald and Tom Stehn.


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USFWS Whooping Crane Migration Update

Dr. Wade Harrell, U.S. Whooping Crane Recovery Coordinator reports that most of the Aransas/Wood Buffalo flock of whooping cranes is now on their way to their Canadian nesting grounds. The Aransas/Wood Buffalo flock is the only remaining self-supporting flock on planet earth.

Whooping Crane Migration Map
Whooping Crane current and former range and migration corridors.

Dr. Harrell advised that, “Whooping crane migration is well underway. We estimate that less than 20% of the population is still on the Texas coast wintering area and that number should quickly dwindle over the next week or so. A significant portion of the population appears to have made it across the border into Canada. Right now we have whooping cranes spread out from the wintering grounds nearly to the breeding grounds in Wood Buffalo National Park. Though the cranes seem to leave in mass, they actually have staggered departures and leave in small groups. This is important as it ensures survival of the species. If they were to all leave together and encountered bad weather or some other catastrophic event, it could put the whole population in jeopardy.”

Harrell also explained that GPS tracking of the whoopers continues. He described that “As of Sunday, April 21, four of the marked birds that we are actively receiving data on were still on the coast. Of those in migration, 12 were in Saskatchewan, eight in the Dakotas, four in Nebraska, two in Oklahoma and one in Texas. Based on this information and other observations, it is likely that more than 80% of the birds in the Aransas/Wood Buffalo population are currently migrating north.”  See Wade Harrell’s full “whooping Crane Update report at: http://www.fws.gov/nwrs/threecolumn.aspx?id=2147549010

For additional information about the Aransas/Wood Buffalo flock migration go to: https://friendsofthewildwhoopers.org/whooping-cranes-migrating-back-canadian-nesting-ground/

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