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Learn How You Can Join the Annual Midwest Crane Count!

posted on 4/1/24

Have you noticed the appearance of sandhill cranes in your neighborhood or maybe at your favorite wetland?

  Here’s your chance to help scientists document the return of the sandhill crane to eastern Iowa!  Join the 48th Annual Midwest Crane Count coming up on April 13th, from 5:30 – 7:30 AM.  Want to learn more about this awesome Citizen Scientist opportunity?  Attend the “Introduction to the Annual Midwest Crane Count” to be held at the Central Park Nature Center on Monday evening, April 8th, from 5-6 PM.  Learn what sandhill cranes look like and where you can go to see one.  Find out how they are returning to the wetlands of Eastern Iowa as they make a comeback into areas, they historically nested in but have been extricated from for over 100 years.  Register for this event at .  For more information on upcoming Jones County programs and events visit

On Saturday, April 13, 2024, from 5:30 to 7:30 a.m., the International Crane Foundation will sponsor the 48th Annual Midwest Crane Count. More than 2,000 volunteer participants from throughout Wisconsin and portions of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio and Minnesota participate in the spring survey, which gathers information on the abundance and distribution of cranes in the upper Midwest.

New volunteers interested in taking part in the survey should register to attend the above listed training opportunity. Additional information on the crane count can be found at

The International Crane Foundation sponsors the Annual Midwest Crane Count to conserve the world’s 15 species of cranes and the natural communities on which they depend. Sandhill Cranes once nearly disappeared from Wisconsin, but the species has successfully recovered and is slowly expanding into neighboring states.

Observations of Sandhill Cranes can lend insight into threatened crane species, including the endangered Whooping Crane. There are now approximately 75 Whooping Cranes in the reintroduced population in central Wisconsin, and Crane Counters may have a chance of sighting a Whooping Crane during the survey.