Sandhill Crane

(Antigone canadensis)

Conservation Status
Sandhill Crane
Photo by Bill Reynolds
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N4B, N4N - Apparently Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

S4B,SNRM - Apparently Secure Breeding, Unranked Migrant

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
           
           
           
 
Description
 
 

 

 
     
 

Size

 
 

42 to 48 in length

72 to 84 wingspan

 
     
 

Voice

 
   
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Shallow marshes

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Migration

 
 

Late March to early May and early September to early December

 
     
 

Nesting

 
 

 

 
     
 

Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Occurrence

 
 

Uncommon breeder; uncommon to common migrant

 
         
 

Maps

 
 

The Minnesota Ornithologists’ Union All Seasons Species Occurrence Map

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Aves (birds)  
 

Order

Gruiformes (cranes, rails, and allies)  
 

Family

Gruidae (cranes)  
 

Genus

Antigone (antogone cranes)  
       
 

Sandhill Crane was formerly classified as Grus canadensis. A molecular phylogenetic study published in 2010 showed the genus Grus to be polyphyletic, not evolutionarily distinct. The species were rearranged into four evolutionarily distinct (monophyletic) genera, and Sandhill Crane was placed in the resurrected genus Antigone.

 
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Canadian Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis rowani)

Cuban Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis nesiotes)

Florida Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis pratensis)

Greater Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis tabida)

Lesser Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis canadensis)

Mississippi Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis pulla)

 
       
 

Minnesota’s Sandhill Cranes are all of the subspecies Greater Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis tabida). There are five populations of the subspecies tabida in North America. They differ morphologically but have not been differentiated taxonomically. Two of the populations are resident in Minnesota. According to the Minnesota DNR, “...cranes in northwest Minnesota belong to the mid-continent population while those in central and east-central Minnesota belong to the eastern population.”

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Grus canadensis

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

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Dan W. Andree

 
 

Brownest Sandhill Cranes I have ever seen...

They were at a dried up pond. Looked similar in color to the whitetail deer this time of year.

  Sandhill Crane  
         
 

Dancing Crane...

It just started doing the crane dance and was entertaining to watch.

  Sandhill Crane  
         
 

Sandhill Crane....

Rural Norman Co. Mn. Spring 2018….

  Sandhill Crane  
           
 

Sandhill Cranes rural Norman Co., Mn.

Seen them east of Twin Valley, Mn. Three together and they all started walking while I took their photo. A sign of Spring with their return.

  Sandhill Crane  
 

Bill Reynolds

 
 

Here is a Sandhill Crane in my backyard.

 
    Sandhill Crane      
 

Joel Motylinski

 
    Sandhill Crane      
 

Wayne Rasmussen

 
 

Sandhill Crane in wetlands of Sherburne Co

Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge is located in the east central region of the state, approximately 50 miles northwest of the Minneapolis/St. Paul metropolitan area and 30 miles southeast of St. Cloud. The refuge protects 30,700 acres of habitat for migratory birds and other wildlife.

  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge  
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
    Sandhill Crane   Sandhill Crane  
           
    Sandhill Crane   Sandhill Crane  
           

 

Camera

 

     
 
Slideshows
 

Sandhill Crane
JMC Nature Photos

  Sandhill Crane  

Sandhill Cranes, 2012
Joshua Mayer

  Sandhill Cranes, 2012  

Sandhill Crane
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren

  Sandhill Crane  

Sandhill Cranes
Craig A. Mullenbach

  Sandhill Cranes  

Close-up look at the Sandhill cranes
Chicago Tribune

   
 
About

Uploaded on Dec 15, 2010

A special close-up look at the Sandhill cranes stopping over at the Jasper-Pulaski Fish and Wildlife Area in Medaryville, Indiana.

 

Nature Photography - Sandhill Cranes
Kristen Westlake

   
 
About

Uploaded on Sep 17, 2007

http://www.kristenwestlake.net/galleries/002Wildlife/Birds/Sandhill-Cranes/ for pictures from my Sandhill crane Gallery.

The Sandhill Cranes at a flyway East of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.

 
     

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

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Other Videos
 
  Nebraska's Great Sandhill Crane Migration
Crane Trust
 
   
 
About

Published on Jan 12, 2013

Experience the wonder of Nebraska's Great Sandhill Crane Migration with the Crane Trust.

 
  Three Sandhill Cranes calling to cranes flying past
babyleon
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on May 2, 2011

Three Sandhill Cranes, likely a family group of two adults and a juvenile, respond to the calls of a group of Sandhill Cranes flying past. This was filmed on May 1, 2011 in Far North Bicentennial Park, Anchorage, Alaska. The video starts with the likely juvenile Sandhill Crane hunting for Wood Frogs. The first call of the distant cranes is heard around 1:00. Where the two likely adults are first seen, the male is probably the one on the right. The entire calling episode is included.

 
  Sandhill Cranes Dance
MadisonFloridaVoice
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jan 30, 2011

This pair of Sandhill Cranes have taken up residence on our farm.

Dancing is emblematic of cranes. For birds that are usually cautious and often secretive, dancing draws attention and furthermore it is energy-expensive. Dancing is frequent in the lives of cranes because it establishes social relationships, announces territorial claims, cements decades-long pair bonding, and hastens the education of the young. It looks like fun and, sometimes, it may be play.

Source: http://www.christyyuncker.com/WhyCranesDance.shtml

 
  Sandhill Cranes at Jasper-Pulaski FWA | Indiana DNR
Indiana Department of Natural Resources
 
   
 
About

Published on Nov 19, 2012

Jim Bergens, Property Manager at Jasper-Pulaski Fish and Wildlife Area, discusses why Sandhill Cranes converge on Jasper-Pulaski FWA each year in the Fall and Spring and how to best view them. For more information about Jasper-Pulaski FWA, visit: http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/3091.htm and to learn more about Sandhill Cranes, visit: http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/3109.htm

 
  Sandhill Cranes 2.. Minnesota River Valley National Wildlife Refuge 10/7
pefawa
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 8, 2012

The clouds are free only to go with the wind...

As in all migratory cranes, the spring journey to the Breeding grounds is far more urgent than the return in autumn. In a week or two, even the last Sandhills lift from the river bottoms, calling to their kind to follow as they circle higher into hard March skies, a few families of Whooping Cranes come from the south. Arriving later in the season, not lingering long, the unsociable whoopers ignore the last of the Sandhills clusters or chase them from their feeding grounds and roosts. Sandhills, like Whooping Cranes are diurnal migrants, taking advantage of the warm thermals and using "spiral gliding" flight wherever possible to conserve energy. Both species are thought to drive off their last year's young during spring migration, and since juveniles lack the reproductive urge that might propel them further north, they often wander. Forming orderly companies over the river valley, the circling Sandhills take their bearings on distant Breeding grounds in the sub-Arctic, fanning out like flights of mighty arrows. Many of the lesser Sandhill's will point toward the Yukon delta in the far northwest and the shine of the north Pacific....and some will cross the ice strewn water of the Bering Strait, gliding and soaring on cold Arctic winds toward the white horizons of Siberia..

 
       

 

Camcorder

 
 
Visitor Sightings
 
           
 

Report a sighting of this bird.

 
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Be sure to include a location.
 
  Dan W. Andree
End of June 2021

Location: Rural Norman Co. Mn.

They were at a dried up pond. Looked similar in color to the whitetail deer this time of year.

Sandhill Crane  
  Dan W. Andree
April 2021

Location: Northern Tallgrass Prairie NWR, Pavia Unit

It just started doing the crane dance and was entertaining to watch.

Sandhill Crane  
  Dan W. Andree
Spring 2018

Location: Rural Norman Co. Mn.

Sandhill Crane  
  Dan W. Andree
4/12/2018

Location: east of Twin Valley, Mn

Three together and they all started walking while I took their photo. A sign of Spring with their return.

Sandhill Crane  
  Bill Reynolds
5/8/2017

Location: Pennington County

Here is a Sandhill Crane in my backyard.

Sandhill Crane  
  Joel Motylinski
8/2/2016

Location: Oakdale , Mn. Washington County

Sandhill Crane  
  Wayne Rasmussen
6/8/2016

Location: Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

Sandhill Crane in wetlands of Sherburne Co

Sandhill Crane  
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
   

 

 

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