Saturday, March 8, 2008

Common Crane In Nebraska

Thursday, Birdchick who led a group of Minnesotans on a Sandhill Crane tour posted on her blog that they had seen a Common Crane.

The following was posted on the Nebraska Hotline this evening.

This morning we followed directions from Sharon Stiteler and Amber
Burnett who are part of the Minnesota group of 10 who saw the common
crane on Thursday, we drove to the spot after taking in the sunrise
at the Gibbon Bridge viewing platform. As we scanned the flock Paul
Johnsgard invited us to look at the pale whitish crane about twenty
feet in from the west side of the flock. Sure enough I could see the
black marking with my naked eye! It helped that all the birds were
alert and looking at us so all heads were up and facing us. We put
the scope on it and the following persons confirmed the sighting:
Paul Johnsgard, Josef Kren, Jackie Canterbury, Fujiyo Koizumi,
Michelle Johnson, Randy Yeager and Linda R. Brown.

Josef, Paul and I drove back so we could give you good directions to
the field where it was spotted two days in a row. (I have now been
by the field four times in two days and only saw it once. There are
two young eagles in the area keeping the flock of sandhills flighty.
So, I wish you lots of good luck!)

The GIS coordinates for the crane field (from the road) are
40 degrees,41'940, 098 degrees,46'214. The abandoned eagle nest is
at 40 degrees 41'940, 090 degrees,46'648.

1.Directions from Shelton Exit off I-80. Driving directions from
Interstate 80, Exit 291, the Shelton exit. Drive south 1.5 miles. The
crane field is 1.5 miles west of the Shelton Rd 24th Rd intersection
(The field is on 24th-the road going west). The cranes were on the
north side of the road. For reference: There is an abandoned eagle
nest on the south side of the road 1.9 miles west from the
intersection of Shelton Rd and 24th.

2. Directions from Gibbon Exit south off of I-80. Paul wrote out
directions from the Gibbon Bridge Crane Viewing Platform. (This large
platform is located on about the 5th Platte River channel bridge
south of the Gibbon exit off of I-80. This viewing platform is
accessed from Elm Island Rd which is the road directly south of the
bridge. To see the common crane, drive east of Elm Island Rd to
Sodtown Rd. North on Sodtown Rd to 17th, east to Sioux, north to
24th, then east to crane field on north of road. The crane field is
0.4mile east beyond the abandoned eagle nest on the south side of the road.

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