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MINIMUM SURVIVAL RATES FOR MISSISSIPPI SANDHILL CRANES: 
A COMPARISON OF HAND- REARING AND PARENT-REARING 

DAVID H. ELLIS, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 11410 American Holly Drive, Laurel, MD 20708-4019, USA

GEORGE F. GEE, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12100 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20708-4041, USA

GLENN H. OLSEN, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12302 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20708-4022, USA 

SCOTT G. HEREFORD, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge, 7200 Crane Lane, Gautier, MS 39553, USA

JANE M. NICOLICH, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12302 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20708-4022, USA 

NANCY J. THOMAS, USGS National Wildlife Health Center, 6006 Schroeder Road, Madison, WI 53711, USA

MEENAKSHI NAGENDRAN, 3024 Oleander Avenue, Merced, CA 95340, USA 

Hand-reared (56) and parent-reared (76) juvenile Mississippi sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis pulla) were produced at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center (Patuxent), Laurel, Maryland over a 4-year period (1989-92) and released at the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge), Gautier, Mississippi in a controlled experiment. Hand-reared survival rates proved higher than for parent-reared survival for each time category: 6 months, 86% versus 75%; 1 year, 77% versus 68%; 2 years 66% versus 53%; 3 years, 55% versus 43%: partial data for fourth and filth years were 57% versus 31% and 48% versus 37%. 

PROCEEDINGS OF THE NORTH AMERICAN CRANE WORKSHOP 8: 80-84 

Key words: Grus canadensis, Mississippi, reintroduction techniques, sandhill crane.

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