Apr 15-05

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2005: April: Apr 15-05
Trio of Sandhills    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Joseph Hurley
Pair of Turkeys    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Joseph Hurley

Mary Drew at Pasty Central on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 06:01 am:

Last week there were several reports that the Sandhill Cranes were back in the Keweenaw and thanks to Joseph Hurley, a visual has been provided of this gangly looking creature! While feeding in a field such as this, they can often be mistaken for deer when viewed at a distance. That's because they seem to be large birds, when in all actuality they only weigh 9 to 12 pounds, but due to their long skinny legs and neck, we're given the false impression of size! Joseph also had a pair of turkeys in his Guest Gallery album, which started me to wondering... what gobblers do during the winter to survive?

By mb florida on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 06:03 am:

Good Morning...Nice picture.

By Charlie Hopper, Eagle River, MI on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 06:10 am:

On my way in to Calumet yesterday, I think I saw a Sandhill Crane flying near Mohawk.

Courtesy of Michigan Audubon Society

By RD, Iowa on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 06:21 am:

It is well worth the time to check out Joseph Hurley's wonderful collection of Northern Michigan photography. https://pasty.com/pcam/Summer-Vacation-04

By Donna on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 06:50 am:

There was one day, several years ago, I was coming down Post Road, and stopped to look in a field there. There had to be 50-100 Sand Hill Cranes. The noise was PHENOMENAL! The site alone, was just impressive!!! How cool that moment was!

By SUZANNE/ WISCONSIN on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 07:05 am:

We have had sandhill cranes across the road from us for the last couple of years. Too bad that they will no longer have a wetland soon. County calls it progress, I call it distruction. We now have an 18 month moritorium on over 2,000 acres including our land so the county can see how to best develop the land. Like my husband said "Once you put blacktop on this farmland it will never grow food or shelter wildlife again".

By Gary, Surabaya, Indonesia on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 07:45 am:

Hello from Surabaya, Indonesia. I enjoy looking in at the UP and the memories it always brings. Spring is in the air!

By JOHN AND ANNE KENTUCKY on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:18 am:

I can remember whan my father brought my brother and myself out to look at cranes. We were both disappointed when we found out that we going to look at birds and not heavy equipment!

By Raven/Downstate on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:25 am:

Why did the turkey cross the road?

To prove to the possum it could be done.

By sur5er on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:32 am:

Love the bird pictures :) That's something else that I miss about Michigan...the large abundance of various species of birds.

I remember going across the Mighty Mac one summer day, and the ticket booth operator was laughing so hard. He told me that the little boy in the car ahead of me had spotted cranes in the Staights and had thought they were Flamingos from Florida. "Sorry son, we're a bit too far north for flamingos, eh."

By painterontheprarie - IL on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:36 am:

I`m not sure that a turkey can survive a Keewenaw winter. I`ve never seen them north of Crystal Falls.

By sur5er on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:42 am:


I hate when they tear up good farm land and forests for 'progress'. We have a construction company out this way that has done the same thing with thousands of acres of farmland, for subdivision homes.

Food for thought: aren't wetlands protected...especially if it can be proven they are nesting areas for wildlife. I'd be getting my video cam out and sending some pics to some state senators; state representatives; and the Department of Natural Resources. Hmmm....I wonder if those wetlands could possibly be state land.

By Crystal, Houghton on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:42 am:

There were 2 sandhill cranes at the Sturgeon Sloughs last night when I was walking my dog. They were on the path right in front of us. I could also hear some others that were some distance away from the public area. They were beautiful!

By Mary Ann, WY on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:48 am:

It is always nice to see the birds returning to our areas after winter. We have to protect their homes, as this would be a terrible world without birds in it.

By sur5er on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:52 am:

Suzanne/ Wisconsin,

I typed in 'protected wetlands in Wisconsin' into my search engine and got pages and pages of information on the laws. Here are just some of the links I found. Hope these help ;)




By Marc, painesdale on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:53 am:

Wetlands are regulated, not protected. There's a big difference between the two, unfortunately. The US Army Corps of Engineers handles wetlands regulation in the State of Michigan.

By Kathy from Whitmore Lake/Cheboygan on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:14 am:

A few weeks ago I took a hike at Kensington metropark near Brighton to do some bird watching. It has a nature area as well as paved hike/bike trails and a golf course. Well, I hiked the nature area and finally spotted a pair of cranes in the distance, on the far side of a marsh, with my binoculars. Even so, a distant pair of tan specks. Then, on the way out, I glanced at the golf course and slammed on my brakes. There was a crane standing about 6 ft away.

Suzanne, have you touched base with the Nature Conservancy, or do you have any local land trusts that could buy up either the property or the development rights?

By Pete - Mud Lake on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:33 am:

I`d like to point out to all you people complaining about houses being built on farmland and wetlands that the house your living in was once a wild area. You are not the only ones who need a place to live.

By Roudy Mi on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:55 am:

Check this out while you at it. {http://www.illinoisleader.com/columnists/columnistsview.asp? Who knows what lurks in the heart of mens minds. Just be careful who you support.

By Roudy Mi on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:58 am:

Try this. http://www.illinoisleader.com/columnists/columnistsview.asp?c=24692

By SUZANNE/ WISCONSIN on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 10:05 am:

From what was told to us if it is for the GOOD OF THE COMMUNITY another wetland can be purchased and protected while this one can be destroyed in the name of progress. It is in the corridor right next to an interstate highway and most of the 2,000 acres is farmland. they haven't decided if it is to be a subdivision, condos, or industrial park. This will be decided by the hired developer to see what would be best for this area.

By Liz, Idaho on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 10:08 am:

During the 2nd week of April each year, our Native American Students drum in the sunrise from a high point on campus. Two years ago, while walking to work, I witnessed 2 Sand Hills flying along side the hill and skimming the tops of the dental hygiene buildings. To this day I will swear the students also drummed those cranes in with their sunrise ritual.

By Kevin K. Lodi, CA. on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 10:51 am:

Back in the late 80's and thru the 90's I was a road construction inspector in Oakland County MI.
When we had to destroy a wetlands for a road project, we had to build a new wetlands. These new man made wetlands were usually better suited for the wildlife then the natual ones we erased. They bring in an enviromental engineer that designs and over see's the entire project. Nothing gets by these guy's. If there is a nonnative plant in the area of the new wetlands they have it removed. One of the guys on the Survey crew let his kids goldfish go in the new wetlands that we had built. The engineer over seeing the project blew is top, because they are not a native species. Alot of the wetlands that we built over were just basically mudholes. But the new ones were really nice habitates.

By Roger J., Novi on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 11:36 am:

Crystal, Houghton,
Our Sturgeon Sloughs summer 2004 memory was not the birds or wildflowers, but the several hundred ticks we aquired during a nature walk. They were over under and through our clothing. My wife was so creeped out even the skin check was no fun.

By Dr. Nat in Nevada on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 12:58 pm:

Hi all! Nice photos!
Sandhill cranes and turkeys. Both remind me of places I lived. Down in New Mexico we knew autumn was coming when the sandhill cranes arrived. Even had a big birdwatching festival at a wildlife refuge nearby when the cranes showed up. Turkeys... used to see a lot of them when I lived in Wisconsin. Would ride a horse in the woods near the farm and see turkeys all over the place. Sure do miss those days.

By Missin the UP from NJ on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 01:41 pm:

Sand Hill Cranes and Wild Turkeys are so cool! It's interesting how they can be so regal ...and so funny at the same time. (maybe that's just me!)
Thanks for the neet pics!

By Fred, Three Lakes on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 03:13 pm:

I like the way Sandhill Cranes sound-kind of Prehistoric.

By Ron&Donna Wilkins Louisville, Ky. on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 05:08 pm:

John&Ann in Kentucky: Where are you located in Kentucky? My wife and I are in Louisville. I think there are only three people from here that keep track of what's going on in the U.P.!
We are looking forward to a return visit to Calumet,although we haven't been able to visit for awhile.

By Tony on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 05:49 pm:

was'nt aware of turkeys (winged kind ) were that far up north. Have a place in Gay have never seen them. Plenty of sand hills cranes though down by the burdette park road. Dying for a reason to come up are the walleye biting yet?

By joe on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 07:03 pm:

Yea the bridge cam is up and running.

By danbury on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 07:04 pm:

Watch out, Roudy, the black helicopters are on their way!
Just kidding.
Honestly, there's some points in the article you've linked above that are indeed questionable in the way the article questions them (Cattle unfit for landscape in an agricultural area? C'mon, give me a break).
On the other hand, this "my home is my castle and only I decide what happens there" is an idea that is prone to create controversies.
Although it's just what that neighbour who doesn't want the dog on his property utilizes, so what?
On that point at the very least, someone has to think again.

We all live together more or less, depending on the point of view. This must be taken into account.
I don't know about the actual conflict, but it seems to me the so-called "environmentalists" are not what I'd call such, but more like people who moved into the country and are not willing to deal with the whole package of living there.
After all, people are part of the environment, too.
Though that's no excuse for sticking to bad habits (should there be some).

By Yooper Willie on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 07:41 pm:

Taking the shortcut into Florence last fall, we saw three "displaying Toms" on one side of the road, and about fifty hens gleaning the fields on the other.

They are definitely fifteen miles from the State line, and working their way here ....

By Therese from just below the bridge on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 08:15 pm:

There's a hayfield just down the road from me that floods as the snow melts, and every spring a pair of sandhill cranes stop off for a few days to eat the spring peeper-frogs. I haven't seen them this spring as I am working too late every day (sob sob)-- and come to think of it, I havent heard the spring peepers yet despite the mild weather. Either they installed mufflers on their throats over the winter or my high-pitch hearing is going.

Anyway, I love the cranes and even more love the herons. Three years ago I saw a pair of courting green herons in mating plumage and thought they were glossy ibises until I looked at the straight bills. Their feathers were an intense metallic green; very tropical looking.

By Gus on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:22 pm:

Tony,, Some of the lakes around the Keweenaw still have ice on them. I do not know if the walleye are biting yet. Some of the Keweenaw lakes still have ice on them and the season doesn't open until May 15.

By downstate don on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:36 pm:

Speaking of birds, has anyone from the U.P ever
seen a ausprey? We have them here downstate. Have
a good weekend!

By Barb in Jacobsville on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 09:52 pm:

To Downstate Don,

Here at White City, which is a suburb (ha ha) of Jacobsville, we
have osprey. There aren't as many as there used to be, but we
occasionally see them.

By downstate don on Friday, April 15, 2005 - 10:47 pm:

Barb in Jacobsville;; That is so cool! I read
sometime ago in the Free Press that they found one
up in the upper part of Lower Michigan but had no
idea they were up that far. Thanks

By MRL, rural Michigan on Saturday, April 16, 2005 - 12:06 am:

In checking out the link "illinoisleader" mentioned above, the first thing one should note is the heading - OPINION - at the top of the article. After reading the whole piece one might also add OPINIONATED. Conclusions about complex issues, such as protecting both personal rights and the environment, should be based on accurate, specific information, not generalized ranting and raving. Just careful what you support, AND be careful what you take at face value.

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