Sunday, June 13, 2010
Cranes in Love: Part 2
Such a vixon! Two cranes are on the knoll between our parking spot and Blacktail Ponds. One chases the other off the knoll. The interloper flies to the far side of the pond while the chaser swings around and returns to the knoll. That is when we realize the crane doing the chasing is a female and there is a third crane in the area. Lots of ‘churring’ (a deep vocalization) as this crane comes out of the bushes.
The female (who did the chasing) drops her wings in front of the male.
She bows forward as he climbs onto her back, neatly steadying himself by wrapping his long toes around the forward edge of her wings. One tail twists to the left while the other twists to the right. The two copulate.
Afterwards she rouses....
.... and he bows.