Phyllis Haehnle Memorial Audubon Sanctuary

 

 

 

Phyllis Haehnle Memorial Audubon Sanctuary

 

 

 

 

MICHIGAN  AUDUBON

JACKSON  AUDUBON 

  CONTACT US 

 

 

Welcome Page

About the  Sanctuary

Driving Directions

Sanctuary History

Crane Counts

About Sandhill Cranes

Events and News

Species Lists

Donations

 

 

 

 

HAEHNLE SANCTUARY FALL CRANE COUNTS

Haehnle Memorial Sanctuary conducts Crane Counts at the sanctuary starting the first Monday after Labor Day and every Monday thereafter until the Sandhill Cranes depart for the winter.  The counts start around 3:30 PM. This page contains current and historic count data.

Detailed reports and Counts for the Fall of 2014

 

Crane counts, reports and sightings for the 2014 season.

Detail Crane counts for this season and the four previous years.

Current map of locations of  Cranes seen feeding near Haehnle Sanctuary.

Peak Crane counts 1941 to the present.

Detail Crane counts 1969 to present.

 

We normally have many Greater Sandhill Cranes stop at our sanctuary in the fall. In the last few years we have been fortunate to have a Whooping Crane visit as well .(The Whooping Crane is observably larger than the Sandhill, mostly white with black wing tips and black on front of head and beak.)

If you spot the Whooping Crane, please do not disturb him and do not trespass on private land to get a better view.

DETAILED CRANE COUNTS FAR THIS SEASON AND THE FIVE PREVIOUS YEARS.

 2009 Date 

 2009  Count 

2010 Date

 2010  Count 

2011 Date

 2011  Count 

2012 Date

 2012 Count 

2013 Date

 2013 Count 

2014 Date

 2014 Count 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3-Sep

 295

Sep 9

2

Sep 7

6

14-Sep

19

13-Sep

146

12-Sep

5

10-Sep

304

Sep 16

66

Sep 14

2

21-Sep

100

20-Sep

237

19-Sep

5

17-Sep

297

Sep 23

36

Sep 22

45

28-Sep

126

27-Sep

318

26-Sep

0

24-Sep

349

Sep 30

21

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

43

5-Oct

42

4-Oct

448

3-Oct

5

1-Oct

811

Oct 7

239

Oct 6

 

5-Oct

 

11-Oct

1,762

10-Oct

18

8-Oct

1,875

Oct 14

385

Oct 13

43

12-Oct

18

18-Oct

2,108

17-Oct

362

15-Oct

2,586

Oct 21

176

Oct 20

44 

19-Oct

230

25-Oct

2,639

24-Oct

18

22-Oct

3,670

Oct 28

714

Oct 27

72 

26-Oct

 

 

 

31-Oct

32

29-Oct

5,012

 

 

 

 

2-Nov

 

1-Nov

4,094

 

 

5-Nov

7,483

Nov 4

62

Nov 3

39 

9-Nov

 

8-Nov

4,792

7-Nov

32

12-Nov

6,490

Nov 11

4

Nov 10

17 

16-Nov

 

15-Nov

5,523

14-Nov

13

19-Nov

8,177

Nov 18

29

Nov 16

273 

23-Nov

 

22-Nov

4,473

21-Nov

17

26-Nov

6,927

Nov 25

 

Nov 24

 

30-Nov

 

29-Nov

 

28-Nov

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

7-Dec

 

6-Dec

 

 

 

3-Dec

5,540

 

 

Dec 1

 

14-Dec

 

13-Dec

 

 

 

10-Dec

2,802

 

 

Dec 8

 

21-Dec

 

20-Dec

 

 

 

17-Dec

2,216

 

 

 Dec 15

 

CRANE  COUNTS, REPORTS AND SIGHTINGS FOR THIS SEASON  (FALL 2014)

CRANE COUNT:  273 SANDHILL CRANES ON SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2014.
We had a lot of crane traffic at the Sanctuary over the weekend. 500-700 were counted landing in the marsh and on the ice on Saturday the 15th with a few thousand flyovers. 273 cranes were counted in the sanctuary on Sunday the 16th. They actually all lined up in a row straight out from the overlook. In terms of flybys, did not count but definitely a few thousand.  They were a lot closer than they have been and many groups flew in and then circled back out.  We had a couple dozen groups fly directly above  the overlook and that was a treat for the few visitors we had that night. We left a bit early as the snow limited our visibility and the cranes that I heard coming overhead were no longer visible. 
Crane count was cancelled for Monday, November 17 due to poor weather conditions.

 counted by Marsi Darwin, Steve Jerant, Ron Hoffman and Bob Ochs

CRANE COUNT:  17 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2014.

For our second fall survey count we had a total of 17 cranes roost in Mud Lake marsh. A additional 158 flew by north of the sanctuary. We will be conducting one more count on November 17th and if still low numbers this count will be last for 2014. I am hoping that deer gun season will send the cranes into Mud Lake marsh to roost.  

Species count other than cranes - 30
Trumpeter Swan 
Canada Goose 
Mallard 
Black Duck 
Gadwall 
American Wigeon 
Northern Pintail 
Northern Shoveler 
Green-winged Teal 
Pied-billed Grebe 
Ring-billed Gull 
American Coot 
Northern Harrier 
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk 
Mourning Dove
Red-bellied Woodpecker 
Downy Woodpecker 
Blue Jay 
American Crow 
American Robin 
Cedar Waxwing
Black-capped Chickadee 
White-breasted Nuthatch 
American Tree Sparrow
American Goldfinch 
Northern Cardinal 
European Starling 
Red-winged Blackbird 
Rusty Blackbird 
Compiled by Gary Siegrist

CRANE COUNT:  39 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2014.

Counts continue to be low for cranes coming into roost at Mud Lake marsh. We did observe significant numbers of cranes moving north of the marsh, so they are in the area, just not coming to the sanctuary.  We had our usual masses of blackbirds boiling and swarming in the distance, and a few Rusty Blackbirds posed for some good scope views.  As the night came to a close, the marsh grasses turned a perfect autumnal gold.  That show was followed by a brilliant purple sunset.   Another beautiful night at Haehnle Sanctuary even if the cranes did not join us.

Crane counters:    Don Henise, Robyn Henise, and Gary Siegrist
 Compiler: Steve Jerant

Crane numbers – 39 in the marsh and 1699 fly-bys

  Species count-35

Canada Goose
Wood Duck
Green-winged Teal
American Black Duck
Mallard
Northern Pintail
Northern Shoveler
Gadwall
American Widgeon
Northern Harrier
Red-tailed Hawk
American Coot
Sandhill Crane
Ring-billed Gull
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Blue Jay
American Crow
White-breasted Nuthatch
Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Cedar Waxwing
European starling
Northern Cardinal
American Tree Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
Rusty Blackbird
Common Grackle
Purple Finch
American Goldfinch

 72 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 27,  2014.

We had unseasonably high temperatures this afternoon but we also has unseasonably low crane counts. The total count was 72 cranes staying in Mud Lake marsh overnight. 253 cranes were tagged as “fly-bys” so they are out there, just not all coming to Haehnle Sanctuary to roost for the night. Between 6:30 and 7:00 we had a huge number of American Robins fly over the crowd at the Harold Wing overlook. The robins came in very low, some were even at head height! Quite a spectacle.  

Crane counters:    Don Henise, Robyn Henise, Gary Siegrist, and Ron Hoffman

CompilerSteve Jerant 

 

Crane numbers – 72 in the marsh and 253 fly-bys

 

Species count-44

Pied-billed Grebe

Great Egret

Turkey Vulture

Trumpeter Swan (with signet)

Canada Goose

Wood Duck

Green-winged Teal

American Black Duck

Mallard

Northern Pintail

Northern Shoveler

American Widgeon

Ring-necked Duck

Bald Eagle

Northern Harrier

Sharp-shinned Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

American Coot

Sandhill Crane

Ring-billed Gull

Mourning Dove

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

Belted Kingfisher

Hairy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Blue Jay

American Crow

White-breasted Nuthatch

Eastern Bluebird

American Robin

Cedar Waxwing

European Starling

Northern Cardinal

American Tree Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Swamp Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Red-winged Blackbird

Rusty Blackbird

Common Grackle

American Goldfinch

CRANE COUNT:  44 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 20,  2014.

Crane numbers continue to be lower than average for the season.  We were treated to good views of our nesting pair of Trumpeter Swans with their signet (young).  A Sharp-shinned Hawk was spotted several times to the north and we were able to provide good scope views for some of our visitors.  Interesting bird sightings included Swamp, Fox, Lincoln’s, White-throated, and White-crowned Sparrows.  A flock of Purple Finches milled near us all evening as well.  

 

Crane counters:    Robyn Henise, Gary Siegrist, and Ron Hoffman

CompilerSteve Jerant 

 

Crane numbers – 44 in the marsh and 25 fly-bys

 

Species count-48

Pied-billed Grebe

Great Blue Heron

Great Egret

Turkey Vulture

Trumpeter Swan

Canada Goose

Wood Duck

Green-winged Teal

American Black Duck

Mallard

Northern Shoveler

Gadwall

American Widgeon

Redhead

Bald Eagle

Northern Harrier

Sharp-shinned Hawk

American Coot

Sandhill Crane

Ring-billed Gull

Mourning Dove

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Blue Jay

American Crow

Black-capped Chickadee

Tufted Titmouse

White-breasted Nuthatch

Eastern Bluebird

American Robin

Cedar Waxwing

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Northern Cardinal

Field Sparrow

Fox Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Lincoln's Sparrow

Swamp Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Red-winged Blackbird

Rusty Blackbird

Common Grackle

House Finch

Purple Finch

American Goldfinch

CRANE COUNT:  43 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 13,  2014.

Sandhill Crane numbers dropped off since last week with only 43 cranes being counted as they came in to roost in Mud Lake Marsh. Another 203 cranes were counted as flyby birds.

Sparrows provided some of the highlights during today's count with Field, Lincoln's, Song, Swamp, White-throated and White-crowned being reported. A group of Purple Finches were feeding on various berries along the prairie edges. Our resident Trumpeter Swan Family (2 adults and 1 young) made a showing in the very distant waters. Three 1st year Northern Harriers were seen throughout most of the evening coursing the marsh. Only 1 or 2 Great Egrets were seen in the marsh, but at dusk 24 flew overhead  from south to north, 19 in one group.
 

COUNTERS:  Gary Siegrist (Head), Don Henise, Lathe Claflin, Ron Hoffman
COMPILER: Steve Jerant.

SPECIES SEEN 42:  
Canada Goose
Trumpeter Swan
Wood Duck
American Wigeon
Gadwall
American Black Duck
Mallard
Northern Shoveler
Green-winged Teal
Pied-billed Grebe
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Turkey Vulture
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Haw

Red-tailed Hawk
Mourning Dove
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted)
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
White-breasted Nuthatch
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Eastern Bluebird
American Coot
Sandhill Crane

American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Field Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Lincoln's Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Rusty Blackbird
Common Grackle
Purple Finch
American Goldfinch

 

CRANE COUNT:  104 SANDHILL CRANES ONMONDAY OCTOBER 06, 2014

At last the crane count has broken the three digit barrier for this season.  While we enjoyed the higher count tonight and the variety of birds seen, the real highlight was the weather.  After tucking under the pavilion during a brief rain shower, we were rewarded with a breathtaking view of the marsh.  The sun broke through and brilliantly lit the browns and greens of Mud Lake Marsh, contrasting sharply with a slate colored sky.  Then the robins came out-dozens and dozens were flying in the sunlight. The bright light and the dark sky contrast made them look white.  They could have even been snow buntings!  We were also treated to a full rainbow, horizon to horizon, with a double layer on top.  When the rainbow first appeared, on end looked to be only about 100 yards away at the end of the prairie.  It was the closest I’ve ever been to the end of the rainbow.

 

Interesting Bird sightings included Swamp, White-throated, & White-crowned Sparrows, and a Sedge Wren.  These were spotted by Don  & Lathe in our emerging wetland north of the overlook.  A pair Wilson’s Snipes were followed a while later by a flock of 17 birds.

 

Crane counters:   Don & Robyn Henise, Gary Siegrist, Lathe Claflin, and Ron Hoffman

CompilerSteve Jerant 

Crane numbers – 104 in the marsh and 401 fly-bys

 

Species count-42

Great Blue Heron

Great Egret

Turkey Vulture

Trumpeter Swan

Canada Goose

Wood Duck

American Black Duck

Mallard

Blue-winged Teal

Osprey

Northern Harrier

Sharp-shinned Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

American Coot

Sandhill Crane

Wilson's Snipe

Mourning Dove

Chimney Swift

Belted Kingfisher

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Tree Swallow

Blue Jay

American Crow

Black-capped Chickadee

White-breasted Nuthatch

Sedge Wren

Eastern Bluebird

American Robin

Gray Catbird

Cedar Waxwing

European starling

Eastern Towhee

Song Sparrow

Swamp Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Red-winged Blackbird

Common Grackle

Purple Finch

CRANE COUNT:  45 SANDHILL CRANES ON SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 28,  2014

A count of Sandhill Cranes was conducted on Monday evening at the Haehnle Sanctuary since the weekly count was rained out on Sunday.

For the first time this season, the number of Sandhill Cranes roosting in Mud Lake Marsh outnumbered Great Egrets. We ended the evening with 45 Sandhill Cranes roosting and counted another 124 flybys, so at least we are seeing more cranes moving around in the area and had a few come in to roost in the marsh. Only about 15 Great Egrets were seen tonight.

As is often the case during our fall counts, raptors were well represented. Highlights were an adult Peregrine Falcon flushing a number of ducks as it flew across the marsh, an adult Bald Eagle over the tree line to the north, a lone Broad-wing Hawk soaring overhead shortly after our arrival and a first year Northern Harrier working the marsh the entire time we were there.

A count of Sandhill Cranes was conducted on Monday evening at the Haehnle Sanctuary since the weekly count was rained out on Sunday. We plan to count again on Sunday evening next weekend and then return to our traditional Monday evening counts on October 6th.

For the first time this season, the number of Sandhill Cranes roosting in Mud Lake Marsh outnumbered Great Egrets. We ended the evening with 45 Sandhill Cranes roosting and counted another 124 flybys, so at least we are seeing more cranes moving around in the area and had a few come in to roost in the marsh. Only about 15 Great Egrets were seen tonight.

As is often the case during our fall counts, raptors were well represented. Highlights were an adult Peregrine Falcon flushing a number of ducks as it flew across the marsh, an adult Bald Eagle over the tree line to the north, a lone Broad-wing

COUNTERS:  Gary Siegrist (Head), Don Henise, Lathe Claflin, Ron Hoffman
COMPILER: Steve Jerant.

SPECIES SEEN 42):  
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Turkey Vulture
Trumpeter Swan
Canada Goose
Wood Duck
American Black Duck
Mallard
Blue-winged Teal
Osprey
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
American Coot

Sandhill Crane
Wilson's Snipe
Mourning Dove
Chimney Swift
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Tree Swallow
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
White-breasted Nuthatch
Sedge Wren

Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Cedar Waxwing European starling
Eastern Towhee
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Purple Finch
 

 

CRANE COUNT:  45 SANDHILL CRANES ON MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 22,  2014.

A count of Sandhill Cranes was conducted on Monday evening at the Haehnle Sanctuary since the weekly count was rained out on Sunday. We plan to count again on Sunday evening next weekend and then return to our traditional Monday evening counts on October 6th.

For the first time this season, the number of Sandhill Cranes roosting in Mud Lake Marsh outnumbered Great Egrets. We ended the evening with 45 Sandhill Cranes roosting and counted another 124 flybys, so at least we are seeing more cranes moving around in the area and had a few come in to roost in the marsh. Only about 15 Great Egrets were seen tonight.

As is often the case during our fall counts, raptors were well represented. Highlights were an adult Peregrine Falcon flushing a number of ducks as it flew across the marsh, an adult Bald Eagle over the tree line to the north, a lone Broad-wing Hawk soaring overhead shortly after our arrival and a first year Northern Harrier working the marsh the entire time we were there.

COUNTERS:  Gary Siegrist (Head), Don Henise, Robyn Henise
COMPILER: Steve Jerant

Crane numbers - 45 in

A total of 38 species were recorded between 3:10 and 7:30 pm:

BIRDS SEEN (10):  
Great Blue Heron
Canada Goose
Trumpeter Swan
Wood Duck
American Wigeon
American Black Duck
Mallard
Blue-winged Teal
Northern Pintail
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Turkey Vulture
Northern Harrier

Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper's Hawk
Bald Eagle
Broad-winged Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Sandhill Crane - 45 Roosting in Mud Lake Marsh, 124 flybys
Great Horned Owl
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
American Kestrel
Peregrine Falcon

Blue Jay
American Crow
Tufted Titmouse
Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Cedar Waxwing
Common Yellowthroat
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
American Goldfinch

CRANE  COUNTS, REPORTS AND SIGHTINGS FOR THIS SEASON  (FALL2013)

CRANE COUNT:  2 SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER. 14,  2014.

We finished our second week of counting, enjoying a beautiful day and evening to offset the low numbers of cranes. 59 Great Egrets came in to roost, but the majority of them took off in a large group shortly before sunset. Our Trumpeter swan and young was observed early in the evening and later was seen chasing some Canada geese. Other highlights included an immature Bald Eagle, Common Nighthawk, and a pair of Great Horned Owls calling to let us know it was about time to pack up for the night. A complete species list is below.

Some visitors to the Sanctuary came out of the woods on our nature trail with a 4 point buck following them. This deer has been sighted by others, including me, this year. He does not seem to be at all fearful of humans and it took quite the effort to move him away from the Harold Wing overlook.

NOTE: Crane counting continues on Sundays until October, when we will return to Monday evening.

COUNTERS:  Gary Siegrist (Head), Don Henise, Robyn Henise
COMPILER: Steve Jerant.

Crane numbers - 2 in marsh, 59 fly-by's

Total bird species seen – 44

BIRDS SEEN (10):  
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Turkey Vulture
Trumpeter Swan (with young)
Canada Goose
Wood Duck
Green-winged Teal
American Black Duck
Mallard
Northern Pintail
Blue-winged Teal
Bald Eagle (imm.)
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
 

Red-tailed Hawk
Sandhill Crane
Killdeer
Wilson's Snipe
American Woodcock
Ring-billed Gull
Mourning Dove
Great Horned Owl
Common Nighthawk
Chimney Swift
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
airy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker

Tree Swallow
Barn Swallow
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
White-breasted Nuthatch
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Cedar Waxwing
European starling
Common Yellowthroat
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
American Goldfinch

CRANE COUNT:  6 SANDHILL CRANES ON SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 7,  2014.

The Haehnle Sanctuary Crane Counting crew held our first count of the season at the sanctuary. While its still early and cranes have not started to gather we had a great night with lots of raptors to watch and record. Seven different species appeared over the skies of the sanctuary. Turkey vulture, red-tail hawk, cooper's hawk and a nice adult female northern Goshawk were seen and are frequent visitors to Mud Lake Marsh. A adult bald eagle and american kestrel made a appearance with the night being topped off by a female Merlin flying slowly by the observation hill, giving us great looks at this small falcon.

We also watched two different common nighthawks souring above our heads hawking insects.

Crane numbers - 6 in marsh with 16 fly-by's.

Total bird species seen - 38

p.s. our resident trumpeter adult swans that nested in Mud Lake Marsh for the first recorded time gave us brief looks at the juvenile that was born at the sanctuary.

Note that we will be counting on Sundays during the month of September, then move back to Mondays our traditional counting night.

COUNTERS:  Gary Siegrist (Head), Don Henise, Robyn Henise
COMPILER: Steve Jerant.

 

MAP SHOWING LOCATION OF  CRANES NEAR HAEHNLE SANCTUARY.

VIEW OR PRINT LATEST CRANE VIEWING MAP AND INFORMATION

CLICK  ON THE MAP, OR HERE FOR LARGER MAP

 


PEAK CRANE COUNTS FROM 1941 TO THE PRESENT.

 

Year

Number

1941

8

1952

33

1959

66

1970

282

1971

429

1975

469

1980

1,325

1985

1,458

1990

1,432

1995

3,893

2000

2,876

2001

4,019

2002

3,084

2003

3,924

2004

2,952

2005

2,310

2006

1,564

2007

3,885

2008

280

2009

230

2010

5,523

2011

362

2012

8,177

 

 

DETAIL CRANE COUNTS 1969 TO PRESENT