Whooping Cranes are celebrated on Whooping Crane day each year on May 28th. Below you can learn some cool facts about these endangered North American birds.

Facts About Whooping Crane

  • The Whooping Crane; Grus americana, of North America is among the rarest birds in the world.
  • These majestic birds nearly went extinct in the early 1900’s due to hunting and habitat loss.
  • Back in 1973, when the Endangered Species Act was passed, fewer than 50 Whooping Cranes existed in the wild.
  • Adult Whooping Cranes are the tallest birds in North America and are identified by a red skin patch on their forehead, black “mustache” and legs, and black wing tips visible in flight.
  • The last naturally occurring Whooping Crane population migrates more than 2,500 miles from their breeding grounds in western Canada to winter on the coastal wetlands in southern Texas.
  • On their wintering grounds along the Gulf Coast of Texas, Whooping Cranes feed nearly exclusively on blue crabs and wolfberries, which differs from the population’s diet of small mammals, insects, and amphibians on their breeding grounds in Canada.
  • Today, nearly 600 Whooping Cranes live in the wild and thanks in large part to the work of the International Crane Foundation.
  • I was lucky to visit the International Crane Foundation, a conservation organization in Baraboo, Wisconsin that studies and protects all 15 of the world’s crane species.
  • Whooping Crane Day is May 28th

VISIT the International Crane Foundation to learn more about the world’s cranes


Learn More About Cranes in Video Workshop

Learn all about the world’s 15 species of cranes, with a focus on the endangered Whooping Crane of North America in this 90-minute replay of a live workshop I taught.
You may want to
 DOWNLOAD the crane image in order to follow along to the step-by-step crane drawing demonstration in the second half of this workshop.





More Bird Resources on this Website

Here are some more stories, videos, and bird sketching resources I’ve written.

World Penguin Day

All About Whooping Cranes

How to Sketch Barn Owls

World Migratory Bird Day and Why Birds Migrate

My Costa Rica Birding Big (sketching) Day

Tips for Sketching Birds

How to Sketch Kestrels

Celebrate Vultures

How to Draw Hummingbirds

Identifying Warblers in the Spring

The American Dipper

How to Sketch Parrots

Autumnal Recrudescence

How to Draw Bluebirds

A Black-headed Grosbeak Nest (video)

Kid’s Bird Coloring Pages

Blue-winged Warbler



If you’d like to learn more about birds and how to sketch and paint them, check out my online courses including:

– Stick Figures to Songbirds in Sixty Minutes

– Sketching Backyard Birds for Beginners

– Sketching Neotropical Birds: my newest course which comes bundled with the previous two and so gives you the best deal!