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Sandhill Crane Hunting Gaining Popularity in Kentucky

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January 16, 2013

Sandhill Crane Hunting Gaining Popularity in Kentucky

By Chad Love

Now in its second season, Kentucky's sandhill crane season continues to gain popularity among hunters. A total of 92 cranes were taken during this year's season.

From this story on courierpress.com:
Hunters killed 92 sandhill cranes in Kentucky's second hunting season for the bird. That's 42 more than were killed in the previous season. Most of the birds killed were in Hardin and Barren counties on private land. No more than 400 birds could be hunted during the season. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Migratory Bird Specialist Rocky Pritchert told WFPL in Louisville. The department considers the season a success. Pritchert says the highest estimates had between 100 and 200 birds being shot. Three hundred and thirty-two hunters were given permits this year.

According to the story, there are 84,000 birds in the eastern population of sandhill cranes, and the crane population would have to fall to about 30,000 before Kentucky cancels its crane season. Although sandhills are primarily known as a plains species, they're obviously doing well back east. Any east-of-the-Mississippi crane hunters out there?

Comments (9)

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from ejunk wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

anyone ever see the episode of Tred Barta's show where he tries to shoot one of these guys out of the air with his longbow? man, that was a hoot.

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from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

The farmers here are sure wishing the Ministry would open a season on the damned things. They are very destructive. About thirteen or fourteen years ago three pairs showed up. I'm guessing there's a thousand birds here now. Sandhills, unlike whoopers and blue herons, are excellent parents. Infant mortality is quite low and they are extremely adaptable. Just clipping a hundred birds or so a year is not going to get any headway with that burgeoning exotic species population.

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from scratchgolf72 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

no season in MI, i can remember a few years ago you may see 2 or 3 a year, now they are all over the place, and damn are they loud!!!

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from CCMJS wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

We will never get a sandhill season in Michigan. We had a dove season and lost it. We were suppose to have a huntable moose herd by the year 2000 and that hasn't happened either.

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from tneal1987 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

We have them here but I have enver hunted them. I do not even know what I would do with one once I shot it?

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from habben97 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

wouldn't it be great to cook one of these and leave the legs on? imagine the looks on your guests faces!

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from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

tmeal, they aren't called the Ribeye of the Sky for no reason. Cook em like a goose. The swans, on the other hand, taste like crap. Or so I'm told. Shouldn't be much trouble to get a tag for one down your way if you want to try one. These things are the up and coming waterfowl nuisance and likely to displace geese in many areas. The farmers here sure hate them. They're real hard on the corn when it's sprouting.

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from hermit crab wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

OH, They're not exotic. They've been around for an awfully long time. Never knew they were an agricultural pest, but they aren't very common where I live. Haven't hunted them yet, but I'd love to! I'm sure once the issue becomes a squeaky enough wheel, they'll open a season up for them.

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from jusdane wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

If you don't know what to do with a crane after you've shot it ... feel free to send it to me. I've shot more than I can count up in Saskatchewan on "business trips". Easily better tasting than any duck or goose I've ever had, they are also nicknamed the Flying Filet. They are very wary, so 3-1/2 inch BB's help to reach out and touch them. Never send a dog after a cripple though, with their long beaks they'll take aim for the eyes.

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from ejunk wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

anyone ever see the episode of Tred Barta's show where he tries to shoot one of these guys out of the air with his longbow? man, that was a hoot.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

The farmers here are sure wishing the Ministry would open a season on the damned things. They are very destructive. About thirteen or fourteen years ago three pairs showed up. I'm guessing there's a thousand birds here now. Sandhills, unlike whoopers and blue herons, are excellent parents. Infant mortality is quite low and they are extremely adaptable. Just clipping a hundred birds or so a year is not going to get any headway with that burgeoning exotic species population.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from scratchgolf72 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

no season in MI, i can remember a few years ago you may see 2 or 3 a year, now they are all over the place, and damn are they loud!!!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from CCMJS wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

We will never get a sandhill season in Michigan. We had a dove season and lost it. We were suppose to have a huntable moose herd by the year 2000 and that hasn't happened either.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tneal1987 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

We have them here but I have enver hunted them. I do not even know what I would do with one once I shot it?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from habben97 wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

wouldn't it be great to cook one of these and leave the legs on? imagine the looks on your guests faces!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

tmeal, they aren't called the Ribeye of the Sky for no reason. Cook em like a goose. The swans, on the other hand, taste like crap. Or so I'm told. Shouldn't be much trouble to get a tag for one down your way if you want to try one. These things are the up and coming waterfowl nuisance and likely to displace geese in many areas. The farmers here sure hate them. They're real hard on the corn when it's sprouting.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hermit crab wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

OH, They're not exotic. They've been around for an awfully long time. Never knew they were an agricultural pest, but they aren't very common where I live. Haven't hunted them yet, but I'd love to! I'm sure once the issue becomes a squeaky enough wheel, they'll open a season up for them.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jusdane wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

If you don't know what to do with a crane after you've shot it ... feel free to send it to me. I've shot more than I can count up in Saskatchewan on "business trips". Easily better tasting than any duck or goose I've ever had, they are also nicknamed the Flying Filet. They are very wary, so 3-1/2 inch BB's help to reach out and touch them. Never send a dog after a cripple though, with their long beaks they'll take aim for the eyes.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

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