Copyright 2000-2014 by Thomas Zinneman.  All rights reserved.

Sandhill Crane  Grus canadensis

There are six subspecies of the Sandhill Crane that are currently recognized.  They are the Lesser, Cuban, Florida, Mississippi, Canadian, and Greater.  Most Sandhill Cranes are migratory, breeding in the northern U.S., Canada, Alaska, and Siberia.  Each winter they undertake long journeys southward to their wintering grounds in Florida, Texas, Utah, Mexico, and California.  En route, more than three-fourths of all Sandhill Cranes use migratory staging areas in a single 75-mile stretch along Nebraska’s Platte River.

In Florida, the Florida subspecies is a non-migratory bird.  They live and breed in most of the central portion of the Florida peninsula.  The northern subspecies migrate to Florida during the winter months of Oct-Nov and return to their Canadian breeding grounds during the spring months of Feb-Mar.