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Minnie

Profile Picture and Leg Ring Combination Code

Minnie
  • Red
  • Green
  • Red

What is this?

Each crane has a unique combination of 3 coloured rings on their right leg. This marking code helps to identify the crane in the wild.

  • Sex: Male
  • Date of Hatching (birthday): 28 April, 2010
  • Date of Release: 24 August, 2010
  • Tracking Tag: Satellite tracking
  • Status: Unknown - Paired with Wendy (2010 female) Breeding attempt in 2015 2015: 1 chick fledged from a 2 egg clutch. Disappeared October 2015. 2016 N/A
  • Life Status: Deceased
  • Champion Status: Championed
  • Paired with: Wendy

Character profile:

Summer 2010: Minnie was the most aggressive of all the chicks, fighting with anyone that crossed his path! His was also very fond of eating thistles, which no other bird liked. He became top crane at the Slimbridge crane school after battling with Clarence and Gemma.  He is now much less aggressive, although he will vigorously defend himself if challenged. Named Minnie (as in "Minnie the Minx") prior to sex testing which showed her to be a he. He has a distinctive ginger head and neck plumage and is the brother to the very similar looking Dennis.  Has bonded well with Vince.  September 2010: Minnie has formed a strong bond with Vince as well as Mennis and the trio of Minnie, Vince and Mennis are often seen together. This group often go off and explore and feed independently of the other birds, and are definitely not part of Clarence's gang.    The trio are often also joined by Chris, Squidgy, and Ruby and on occasions Howard.  Despite behaving as an independent unit, Minnie and Clarence's gang roost together at night in the pool within the release enclosure. October 2010: Minnie has now broken up with her gang of three and is frequently joining Clarence and his group instead.  Minnie rejoined his gang after a week apart and continues to explore new areas with them, coming back to roost with the rest in the evenings. November 2010: The group of three, lead by Minnie, has now decided to join Clarence and his larger group (or been accepted by them?). All 20 birds are now usually seen together, probably due to the colder wintery weather, which has made them flock like they would normally in the wild. They have also discovered maize stubbles, which is Minnie's new favourite food! January 2011:  Minnie has become one of the flock - and there has been no sign of his aggression to other birds as shown when younger.  The whole body of birds has acted as one through the coldest December on record.  Minnie is not yet showing much sign of his adult plumage and is still the most rufus of the cranes. March 2011:   Minnie is noticeably behind some of the other birds in obtaining his adult plumage and still has quite a few ginger feathers left on his head. Considering his psychotic nature as a chick, Minnie has become a mild mannered (sometimes mischievous), middle ranking member of the group. September 2011:  Although he still has quite a lot of his adult plumage, he is still not as developed as some of the other cranes from his cohort.  Despite his mischievous ways as a youngster, he has been relatively amicable towards the new 2011 youngsters. June 2012: Over the winter of 2011/2102 Minnie really developed into a lovely looking crane  - small, but perfectly formed.  It would seem that his evil ways are now behind him, and he is a model member of the group, and even remained in Somerset when 11 of his same year group flew off north to Gloucestershire for a night away. April 2013: Minnie is still very much ‘one of the Somerset flock’ and has not been observed with a mate... yet! July 2013: Minnie underwent a moult on the Levels and Moors, and came through it all unscathed and with a fine set of new wing feathers. January 2014:  In late October 2013 Minnie flew up to Slimbridge along with a group of other birds (including Twinkle) and remained for 28 days before heading back to Somerset.  The rest of the winter was spent down on the Levels, feeding with the main flock on Stanmoor.  He is often seen in the company of Twinkle.  We think this may be a pair bond, but it is early days and only time will tell.  July 2014: Minnie moved from Somerset to Slimbridge in early March and mid month seemed to have formed a pair with Wendy  - both birds were observed mating in early March.  However by early April he seemed more in a partnership with Sedge. No breeding attempt was made, however, and the birds were still together in May and June at Slimbridge. Minnie was observed having a bit of a stand-off with rival male Monty in mid July... and Monty has recently been observed mating with Sedge...so Minnie would appear to be unpaired at the moment.   July 2015:  Minnie did eventually pair up with Wendy - and in early spring 2015 incubation began with the pair hatching 2 chicks in mid May.  Sadly one of the chicks died after a week, but the second chick went on to be successfully raised to fledging by the pair in early August 2015.  This is one of the first fledged chicks for the project – WELL DONE MINNIE! February 2016: Minnie went off the radar in October 2015 with sightings only of Wendy and the chick at Slimbridge through the latter part of the winter.  It is not known what happened to him - and we hope he may turn up again.  July 16: Minnie has still not been seen and is presumed deceased.

Crane Champions

  • Maple Class, Woolavington Village Primary School

Photos of Minnie

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