Michigan — May 5, 2010 at 8:03 pm

The Cranes of Pickerel Lake


Last Friday, my wife Anne C. Savage and I took a mental health break by putting our kayaks into Pickerel Lake northwest of Dexter, Michigan to drink some beer and check out the wildlife. You have probably already seen her remarkable photo of the newborn baby Canada Goose peering out from under the wing of her mother. This photo is of one of several Sandhill Cranes we saw.

Click for a larger version

There were actually two of them, apparently scouting for a nesting site. Anne proceeded to snap photos.

Anne photographing two cranes (seen in the reeds)

As we floated quietly, Anne photographing the 5-foot tall birds and me sipping my beer, I took this photo of Anne with my iPhone then fired up my iPhone iTalk app. What happened next was quite astounding. Several more cranes flew into Pickerel Lake a couple hundred yards behind us, calling out in their odd bark/honk. The two in front of us began a very loud chorus of what I can only assume translates roughly into English as “This spot is OURS! Go find your own spot!”

Click the PLAY button below (you should turn your speakers up or use headphones for best results). You’ll hear the other cranes fly in and then the two in front of us begin their amazing vocalizing. Whoa.

I’m just sayin’…