The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has completed aerial surveys of the whooping crane population centered on the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. The survey shows an upward trend in whooping crane abundance over the last four years with preliminary survey data indicating 308 whooping cranes, including 39 juveniles in the primary survey area. Additionally there were six birds spotted outside the primary survey area. “Recruitment of young birds into the adult population is extremely important to the recovery of the species,” stated Wade Harrell, U.S. Whooping Crane Recovery Coordinator. “We were thrilled to see preliminary survey numbers included 39 juvenile birds.”