Maintaining its endangered status since 1967, the whooping crane species has continued to suffer at the hands of over-development and incessant hunting. Habitat loss is rampant, and the population is rapidly declining. With a shocking mere 900 whooping cranes left in the world, it’s time to act.
The National Zoo’s Smithsonian Biological Conservation Institute has launched a new program that is committed to strengthening and preserving the whooping crane species. It focuses on breeding techniques and in-depth research, and will take place in Front Royal, Virginia. Housing a total of twelve whooping cranes, the Front Royal facility will provide the birds with a safe and structured environment. The sanctuary is specifically designed to mimic their natural habitat and encourage healthy growth.
Hercules Fence has partnered with Kee Construction to generate the 50’ by 150’ whooping crane enclosures for SBCI. From the hinges to the overhead netting, each element of the enclosure was carefully selected to block our predators, prevent potential escapes and ensure that the whooping cranes have the best possible environment to succeed.
Characteristics of the Whooping Cranes
The whooping crane breaks records as the tallest North American bird. Male birds reach close to 5 feet in height and have a 7.5-foot wingspan. Despite their height, the whooping crane is only a surprising 11 to 16 pounds in weight. The birds earn their unique name for their whooping unison calls.
The Path to Endangerment
For decades, the whooping crane has solidified its placement on the endangered species list. Both environmental and human influences have contributed to this classification. There are four key factors that sparked the decline of the whooping crane species: habitat loss, hunting, natural disasters, and climate change. Today, less than 900 whooping cranes exist in the entire world.
Constructing the Whooping Crane Enclosure
The SBCI program wouldn’t be possible without the expert assistance from Hercules Fence and Kee Construction. In this partnership, the whooping crane enclosures were constructed with a strict attention to detail. All five 50’ by 150’ enclosures are complete with freshwater ponds and a complex plumbing system. Each individual structure is divided into three 50’ by 50’ pens. Double gates were installed to add convenience and allow keepers to move between each pen easily. The enclosure is primarily built from a chain link fence, towering 12 feet high. Four ½” steel cables support expansive overhead netting that prevents the birds from escaping. Hercules Fence ensured that the enclosure provided ample room for healthy growth. Additionally, the security of the enclosure kept predators at bay and stopped the birds from escaping.
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Whether you are ready to purchase and install your brand new chain link fence or still have more questions, the trained professionals at Hercules Fence and Newport News are here to help you. We have endless experience in wood, aluminum, chain link, steel, and vinyl fences with offices in Manassas, Richmond, Newport News, Norfolk, Maryland, and North Carolina. Get a free quote today by giving us a call at 757-316-2600 or visit us online today!