Sandhill Cranes Fall Migration
View one of Indiana's greatest wildlife spectacles at Jasper-Pulaski Fish and Wildlife Area. Each fall, thousands of Sandhill Cranes visit the area's shallow marshes.
- Audio: Sandhill Cranes during fall migration (.wav file)
- Audio slideshow: Sandhill Cranes, 2009 migration
- Map: Jasper-Pulaski Fish & Wildlife Area
- Photography Tips
- Video: Sandhill Cranes, 2012 migration
Sandhill Crane counts for 2017-18
- Dec. 27: Most of the cranes have headed south. There are still a few thousand using the NIPSCO generating station and Jasper Pulaski FWA. Northbound cranes usually begin arriving in late January and peak in March. This will be the last update until fall 2018.
- Dec. 19: 8,891
- Dec. 14: 14, 240 and one whooping crane
- Dec. 5: 13,475
- Nov. 28: 12,090
- Nov. 21: 11,963
- Nov. 14: 7,706
- Nov. 7: 4,630
- Nov. 1: 5,271
- Oct. 25: 5,611
- Oct. 17: 4,759
- Oct. 10: 3,848 They will be arriving with a peak in late November or early December.
Best days to see sandhill cranes
Sandhill Cranes can be seen at Jasper-Pulaski from late September through December. Crane numbers peak in mid-November. Magnificent, noisy flocks are usually seen at the northern Indiana property from mid-October through mid-December. Sign in is required at the self service check station.
Best times to see sandhill cranes
Sunrise: Gigantic flocks rise and fly out of roosting marshes to Goose Pasture. The cranes socialize in the pasture for awhile before flying out to feed in surrounding private land (agricultural fields). Sunset: Beginning about one hour before sunset, flocks of cranes kite into Goose Pasture from all directions. They gab and socialize again before returning to roosting marshes at dusk.
Best place to see sandhill cranes
The crane spectacle is best seen at the Goose Pasture Viewing Area. Roosting marshes are closed to the public. During the day, cranes can be spotted feeding and dancing in nearby harvested farm fields.