Whooping cranes will stay in Alabama - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Whooping cranes will stay in Alabama

MILWAUKEE (AP) - This year is the first time in 10 years the whooping cranes won't make it to Florida with a conservation organization trying to re-establish the bird's population.

The nine young cranes and the crew involved in Operation Migration have been in northern Alabama since before Christmas.

The flock started from a Wisconsin wildlife area in October and their destination was the Florida wetlands.

The crew had tried several times to get the birds to follow the aircraft since mid-December including most recently Jan. 29, but the birds have not been cooperative.

Operation Migration spokeswoman Liz Condie said biologists and other experts decided Thursday that the birds will be put in crates and transported by road to Alabama's Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge for the rest of the winter.

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