Ewing Bottoms is overwintering hundreds and hundreds of Sandhill Cranes, which have migrated down from Canada. Yesterday as I photographed the Cranes, water stood heavily in much of the farmland after significant rains last week left the area a bit waterlogged. And as luck would have it one lone Whooping Crane stood amongst the Sandhill Cranes.
Whooping Cranes, an Endangered Species and the tallest bird in North America, are threatened not only by their meager numbers, but also by climate change in the form of warmer temperatures and decreased rainfall. This threat could shrink the Whooping Cranes wetland habitat allowing foxes and lynx easier access to the breed's chicks in northern Canadian. Couple that with their southern winter habitat in Texas, where decreased rainfall and rising sea levels brings less freshwater inflow and potential flooding of the marshlands, and sadly, this species has much to overcome. Given this, I felt blessed to capture several images of this lone Whooping Crane yesterday. Such graceful looking birds. Its solid white body, black head, black legs and red face stood in stark contrast to the grays of the Sandhill Cranes surrounding it. ENJOY!