A concerned citizen from St. Cloud, Florida, brought a sandhill crane chick to SeaWorld Orlando’s Aviculture team to be examined. The chick was 3-4 days old at the time and was deemed too tiny and immature to survive on its own. After determining it was in good health and merely needed to be taught some survival skills, the care team paired the chick with an adult rescue crane. While orphaned chicks are sometimes unaccepted by an unfamiliar adult, this “dynamic duo” is doing well and both are thriving.
Both cranes are set to be released once the chick has “fledged” (grown feathers necessary for flying).It continues to learn specific crane behaviors from its feathered mentor. According to Eric Reece, SeaWorld’s Supervisor of Aviculture, adds, “The chick is doing fantastic. It’s eating on its own and gaining weight.”