birds, Cranes, healing, nature, photography

Sandhill Cranes #8, the Comeback Kid

Although I saw the rest of the family several times in the next couple of days, including the first sighting of the other colt flying as you see above, it took four days to see our wounded one with the family.  I thought he looked terrible, sitting down, but with one of the parents close by.  I was running an errand and had a deadline but I was very upset and thought I had to do something!  So I called a bird sanctuary. I guess I thought they’d swoop in and rescue him since I knew where he was.  The woman assured me that this entire area is a protected area and there is no better place for him to be.  That he was with the family was key, because they were still feeding him and taking care of him.  “Be my eyes”, she said.  Try to see if he is alert to his surroundings, is he pecking at his wing as if he is trying to make it go away?  She said it could be just a sprain.  If they X-ray him and it’s a break involving more than one joint he would automatically be euthanized.  He can live 20 years and have a family of his own, she said.  He is better of with his family.  I don’t know if I was convinced.  The first sighting…woundedsighting

Then four days later, looking better…lookingbetter

I saw them a couple of days later all together but couldn’t get a picture, but on May 30th all four showed up at my lake again.  A neighbor had put bread out and I saw the mom feeding the other colt, but our wounded one was wandering off to a pool of water to take a dip, which they all did eventually.  Then they did a lot of shaking off of the water, and readjusting their feathers…

And then I saw our wounded boy move his wing.  I breathed a huge sigh of relief…hemoveshiswing

Then 13 days later here he is…june12boy

And that’s the story.  How did I think I would end it, with ‘they all lived happily ever after’?  It was never going to be possible to know what became of each of them.  I’ve seen the rest of the family several times, without our boy.  If he is on his own when I’m seeing the other three then he certainly is in better shape than when he first hurt the wing and wasn’t with them.  I think/hope I’ll see them together again here and there since they stay with the parents for 9 to 10 months.  Of course I want him to heal, but if he keeps that ‘dent’ in his shoulder then I may be able to pick him out even when he gets the red coloring on his head.  I just realized, they are four months old today…