Sunday, September 27, 2009
Stalking an elusive Sandhill Crane from Wingra Park to the UW Arboretum
I couldn't get any closer, and it flew off when I tried. At first I thought it was a heron, but if you view it large you can see just a hint of the characteristic Sandhill red spot.
It flew off to my right, along the shore, and I thought it might be flying over to Ho-nee-um Pond in the nearby UW Arboretum, and I walked through the woods to get there. It had started drizzling lightly and I slipped my camera under my jacket to keep it dry. Arriving at the pond, I couldn't see anything. I leaned over some underbrush toward the pond to get a better view.
Suddenly a pair of huge gray wings exploded almost from beneath my feet. The crane's enormous wings completely filled my field of vision for an instant and then rapidly receded across the pond. As I struggled to get the camera out of my jacket and into focus, the crane's powerful wings propelled it past some trees across the pond and out of sight. Next time.