Cool photos, going to show my kids in the morning and then they can do some internet research on Sandhill CranesThe annual migration of 3/4 million Sandhill Cranes to the Platte River in Central Nebraska is underway. They stay for about 6 weeks fattening up on their way to their summer home in the arctic. They congregate along about a hundred mile stretch of the River between Grand Island and Kearney. It's an impressive sight. This year I decided to rent a spot in a blind for an opportunity to see them up closer. They generally will not tolerate your presence closer than about 100 yards. My blind reservation coincided with a snow storm which dropped about 6 inches locally over about 12 hours. It made getting there a little more challenging.
This photo was taken in the evening during a period of heavier snowfall from the viewing area by the Gibbon bridge. The dark mass in the water beginning near the center of the picture and extending to the right edge are Sandhill Cranes standing on a submerged sand bar in the Platte River. The birds spend the daylight hours feeding on fallen corn in nearby fields and then come to the river in the evening to stand in the water overnight. Experts believe this is a defensive strategy against predators.
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This was taken from the blind about 1/2 hour before sunrise.
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I had hoped that we would be closer to the birds in the blind. It turned out to be about 30 yards to the closest ones. But that was way closer than I've ever been before. The following photos have been cropped a lot but all in all I'm happy with how they turned out.
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This was taken after the birds left the River for breakfast. Just thought it was a pretty view with the snow.
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What's the deal with renting a blind? Is this a duck blind (for hunting)? Is renting blinds a common thing?