Monthly Archives: April 2015

Sandhill Crane Viewing–Beluga Slough for a Ringside Seat!


If you want to see nesting Sandhill Cranes, the boardwalk below Islands and Ocean Visitor Center is a great place to view pair behaviors like painting, mating, dancing, fighting, and feeding.  This is the most accessible place in Homer to easily view nesting Sandhill Cranes.

Reports to Kachemak Crane Watch indicate all 3 pairs of Beluga Slough cranes are back in their territories.  Watch for some great crane action here!  Remember it is nesting season so if you are walking with your dog, please keep them on a leash and on the boardwalk.




A Flock of 76 and 18 pairs reported! New Website Launched

Hi Everyone!
FlockIMG_0048                                                                             The cranes are still filtering but a good part of the local flock is here.  A flock of 76 has been reported out East End Road, and 18 pairs have returned to their territories.  Two of the three pairs that nest in Beluga Slough near the boardwalk were sighted today.  One pair was mating next to the boardwalk.  Please call Kachemak Crane Watch to report the return of your nesting pair.

Kachemak Crane Watch is pleased to announce the launching of its new, updated website. We still have a couple of buttons to activate, but other than that, the new version is up and running. You will find lots of crane photos in our photo gallery and a link to our Youtube playlist of sandhilll crane videos. Please share with your friends and families. Who knows you just might turn someone into a craniac!  The link is the same:   Many thanks to Jason Sodergren for his technical expertise in getting this website set up and online.  Thanks also to Michelle Michaud for her help in transferring and updating information from the old website.

A new feature of the website is the blog which will allow us to post updates more frequently.  You can visit the website and subscribe to the blog if you would like to get updates about our cranes.

Fledge for Freedom filmReminder for Shorebird Festival crane presentations:  Friday at 4 pm – 5 pm “A Fledge for Freedom” will be shown, and on Sunday at 1 pm, “Raising Kid Colt” will be featured.  Both films will be accompanied by a slide program.  If you cannot make these showings, check with Island and Ocean Visitor Center to find out when these films will be shown during the summer.  Keep the reports coming in, and hopefully, I will see you at Shorebird Festival!


April 21, 2015–Spring has Officially Arrived!

IMG_1429Two cranes landed in Beluga Slough April 21 at 11 a.m.  We can now say spring has officially begun!

Kachemak Crane Watch is embarking on a new partnership with the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies this summer.  Late last fall, CACS’s Board of Directors voted to take KCW under the organization’s non-profit umbrella and begin a collaboration of citizen science, programs, tours, and more, all related to Sandhill Crane education and conservation.  Very soon, KCW will launch a new website with a blog where these updates will be available to the public.  You will also be able to subscribe to blog updates.   Look for more information about all of this as the summer season begins.

The 2015 Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival is May 8-10.  KCW will be presenting its new video, “A Fledge for Freedom:  A Young Lesser Sandhill Crane’s Quest for Flight.”  A slide program by Nina Faust and the video will be shown on May 9 from 4-5 p.m. at the Islands and Ocean Visitor Center’s theater.  On Sunday, a slide talk by Nina Faust and the video, “Raising Kid Colt”  is scheduled at 1 p.m. to 2 the same location.

Our crane counts and nesting records depend on citizen participation. Please call Kachemak Crane WatchIMG_5313 with your sightings of all Sandhill Cranes, but most especially of nesting pairs.  We are very interested in continuing to gather information about where cranes are nesting, when they begin to sit on the nest, when young hatch, and if the pair successfully fledges their colts.  If you have reported to us in the past, give us a call and let us know if last summer’s colts returned this spring with the parents.

Looking forward to hearing from everyone.  Enjoy the cranes and summer!

April 19, 2015–Cranes are arriving


IMG_1286_2Although you would not know it by the exceptionally nasty weather, spring is here.  The first crane reports are trickling in, although they are of cranes passing overhead going across Cook Inlet to other nesting areas.  April 4, a report of four flying west past Beluga Slough and then on April 16, two reports–seven passing Beluga Slough and 35-40 spiraling high over the Anchor River mouth have been called in.  So far, no cranes have been reported on the groundin the Kachemak Bay area.



Welcome to the Kachemak Crane Watch Sandhill Crane “blog”.  The blog will be an up-to-date happenings of for our local Sandhill Crane Population, with information about crane observations (including nesting and chick rearing), and specifically about the pair of Sandhill Cranes that breed and raise their young at Inspiration Ridge Preserve during their stay in the Homer area.

If you would like to be notified of when I post a blog, be sure to sign up to receive such notifications.  Or you can subscribe to the blog.  Please let me know what you think about the blog, including anything you would like added.

Nina Faust, Co-founder of Kachemak Crane Watch