Feds call for phase-out of whooping crane ultralight flights - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Feds call for phase-out of whooping crane ultralight flights

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MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Federal officials are recommending and end to the use of ultralight aircraft to lead endangered whooping cranes on their first fall migrations to Florida.

The recommendation comes from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the phase-out could happen as early as next fall. The agency wants to end or scale back on strategies for helping whooping cranes that rely heavily on captivity and other artificial methods, saying they don't appear to yield better results than other methods.

But the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Operation Migration, which runs those flights and trains juvenile cranes to follow them, is taking sharp exception to efforts to end its work. The group hopes to convince a consortium that manages whooping cranes in the eastern U.S. that the flights should continue.

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