Text Aivar Leito
Photo Jose A. Román
Estonian text posted 28.02.2018
Crane „Loode“ (centre) in winter quarters in
On February 20th in the morning crane Loode, caught last summer at Sõrve in
He spent the winter in the Extremadura province in western
The migration continued already on the next day, February 25th, and late in the evening of the same day he already reached the Port Ligat harbour at the Mediterranean on the southern French coast and continued the flight above the
Incredible but crane Loode flew from the evening of February 25th to mid-day of February 26th without landing opportunities for 14 hours at a stretch passing nearly
Since it was night and the flight altitude above the sea was only about twenty meters the crane could not see land to use it for visual orientation but flew by its own ”compass” to the exact location, that is, the only migration and wintering area in these surroundings!
Evidently Loode did not travel alone but with his parents and other experienced adult birds who know the whole network of migration pathways by heart!
This migration flight now executed above the sea demonstrates how powerful fliers and navigators our cranes are!
The reason for turning back from the sea may be that the flock of birds was hit by a strong cross wind at sea. The cranes abandoned a battle with the wind and used at first the wind from the back and then the side wind for the retreat which required much less energy.
Looking at the weather maps and European weather news it is rather clear that they were hit by the icy breath of the powerful cold high-pressure area that had reached the
The bird migration map is in transfer to the spring season, in the next few days there will be fresh information again.