Save the Whooping Crane!

Smoky Lake is proud to support the International Crane Foundation’s efforts to save the endangered Whooping Crane.

The endangered Whooping Crane is the tallest flying bird in North America.

Whooping Crane Population

The most recent published report, dating December 2020, estimated that there are currently only 80 Whooping Cranes in the Eastern migratory population. This Eastern migration path extends as far North as Wisconsin and as far South as Florida.

During the 1900s, the Whooping Cranes in the Eastern migration corridor had been completely decimated. In 2000, the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership lead an extensive re-introduction program. This population was able to grow to 119 by 2010, but since then it has been slowly declining to its current level of only 80 birds. As numbers decline, we are reminded how vulnerable this population continues to be. (Source:

To help visualize the number of Whooping Cranes currently in the Eastern migration path, two of Smoky Lake’s support team members — Clara Murphy and Mary Webster — volunteered to create an art installation of 80 paper cranes.

Clara Murphy holds up a chain of paper cranes.
80 paper cranes span the length of a ceiling beam in our showroom. This represents the 80 whooping cranes currently in the Eastern migratory route, between Wisconsin and Florida. (Data from International Crane Foundation)

Cranes are among the most endangered families of birds in the world, with eleven of the fifteen species currently extremely vulnerable and facing potential extinction. These birds face threats from rapid development and habitat loss, poisoning, hunting and more, and they need our help. The International Crane Foundation is giving these admirable birds a chance at survival.

Learn more about the Whooping Crane at the International Crane Foundation website.

Raising Money for Charity

For every eligible video submitted in this year’s video contest, Smoky Lake will make a $5 donation to the International Crane Foundation.

International Crane Foundation Mission Statement

Conserving all 15 species of cranes requires a broad commitment to the people and places essential to cranes. Since our inception in 1973, the International Crane Foundation has dramatically grown in reach and impact, while steadily developing our capacity to address the health of the landscapes that sustain not only cranes, but also people and a wealth of biological diversity.

Approved by Charity Navigator

The International Crane Foundation has received high marks on Charity Navigator.

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