Blessed Birds

As the cranes follow their instincts and fly south in autumn, I, too, followed my urge to undertake a brief trip in the same direction. I wanted to lay eyes on them once again during their stopover in Monte Vista, where they refuel their fat stores, before continuing the journey to their wintering grounds.

I have repeatedly reported about crane encounters; as a matter of fact, my very first blog post was dedicated to the search for them. All my previous forays to Colorado’s San Luis Valley, home to a number of National Wildlife Refuges that are blessed with crane visitations, occurred during the early spring. Not this last one. At the end of a long, dry summer the parched land was swept by fierce fall winds that served as reminders of the conditions responsible for the formation of the famous Great Sand Dunes, propelling soil and dust through the air, and bending blades of grass and boughs of trees.

To enlarge a photo, click on it. To read its caption, hover the cursor over it.

Not the best circumstances for fruitful birding, but not only did I get to hear the cranes’ guttural vocalizations, so evocative of distant dates and destinations, I also spent a few hours in the company of these mythical creatures, who have long inspired awe and love in humans, this human included.

Click here for the German version/hier für die deutsche Version klicken:

44 thoughts on “Blessed Birds

  1. You’ve got some great pictures there, Tanja. Trane birds are fascinating. You hear them always trumpeters before you see them 🙂
    I’ve seen them twice this year but at a distance.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. If you ever get in the vicinity of Baraboo or Wisconsin Dells, stop in to see the International Crane Foundation where one can see many varieties of cranes including the Whooping Crane which they breed there. I plan to write about it in a few weeks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Mitza, for visiting and for commenting. I never grow tired of these beautiful birds.

      By the way, I wanted to point out that your gravatar (the photo that shows the cat) is still linked to your first blog, and not to your current one. That makes it difficult for someone to find your current posts. Maybe you are aware of this, and it doesn’t matter to you, but it might help to link the gravatar to your current blog.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Otto. A professional photographer like yourself with a long lens would be able to get much better close-ups, but all things considered, I was excited to capture them at all. I never tire of them, and feel very fortunate when I am in their presence.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I think you are right, Neil. I think they are practicing their dance moves. The young bird imitates the parent, so when it’s time to find a mate, he or she can impress a prospective mate.
      BTW, it is possible to enlarge the photos by double-clicking on them, it will make it easier to see some of the details.
      Thank you for visiting and for commenting.
      Have a good week,

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Eine tolle Fotoserie. Diese Kraniche sind in ihrer Art etwas anders als unsere. In diesem Jahr gibt es bei uns große Probleme mit den Vögeln .Sie finden kaum Schlafplätze, weil die Flachgewässer zum größten Teil trocken liegen .Man kann sie am Abend beobachten, wie sie häufig ziellos nach einem Platz suchen.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I never cease to be amazed by Colorado’s sky, Jolandi. It is so big, and so changeable. It can go from blue and serene to gray and threatening in no time. Many southwestern states have been in a drought for at least a decade, so I wish the clouds would drop a little more water!


  4. Wunderschöne Bilder, sowohl von der Landschaft wie von den hübschen Kranichen. Hier fliegen sie jetzt auch. Immer wieder ein schönes Erlebnis, sie zu hören und zu sehen. Ich muß mal gucken ,wie eure klingen! Für heute bin ich zu müde, muß ins Bett. Dir ein schönes WE liebe Tanja! LG, Almuth


  5. It is really a blessing to turn our eyes away from the complexities of the world to the loving simplicities in life. I really enjoy all birds. Cranes are very fascinating! Thank you always Tanja for your continued love filled and peaceful shares. ❤😊☕

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Tanja – I too love cranes. The crane is considered a sacred bird in Japanese culture. And I had the most amazing experience when visiting Nijo Castle in Kyoto. I had gone through these gates that had beautiful cranes on them and we were in one of the gardens. I was standing, focusing my camera when a crane flew in and landed in one of the trees. In perfect placement for me to capture it’s graceful visage on film. It was magical. -Jill

    Liked by 1 person

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