1st nest for La. whooping cranes, but no eggs
NEW ORLEANS - For the first time in decades, a pair of whooping cranes in Louisiana have built a nest outside captivity. But biologists don't expect eggs this year. The birds are too young.
The big cranes generally lay their first fertile eggs at 4 to 7 years old. Department of Wildlife and Fisheries spokesman Bo Boehringer says this female is 2 years old and the male is 3.
The department's administrator of coastal and nongame resources says whooping cranes are very protective of their eggs. But this pair isn't chasing away other birds, and they leave the area for days at a time.
Both officials say the experimentation is a positive step.
It's the first known nest made by any of the 40 birds released in southwest Louisiana since early 2011.
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