SWIS District of Optimist International Your Current Governor, Gary Engelke Bringing Out The Best In Kids, in their Communities and in Themselves. 'Dream, Inspire, Grow' Like Us On Facebook!   Watch Us On Youtube!  
Gary Engelke
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Tim Grunewald speaks to Sauk Prairie Optimist Club

Tim Grunewald speaks to Optimist Club


Tim Grunewald, Director of the International Crane Foundation (ICF) spoke to the Optimists on May 23rd.  Grunewald talked about the founders of the Foundation, George Archibald and Ron Sauey, and how they continue the efforts of these men. Their dream was to have all 15 species of cranes at the center.  This goal has been met.  The International Crane Foundation (ICF) is the only place in the world where all 15 species of cranes can be seen, resulting in visitors from all over the world.  The reasons cranes are unique and studied are their behaviors (mating dances etc.), their bright red patches, their vocalizations and the fact that they are prehistoric and the longest lived birds in the world.  ICF helps others to raise and care for cranes around the world.  Sandhill cranes are the most abundant crane and ICF is working with farmers on crop damage challenges.  The whooping crane is the most endangered and where Grunewald spends 75% of his time which is in the Texas breeding grounds.  Due to habitat loss and poaching and 1930-40s military use of their feathers by 1941-42 there were only 16 wild whooping cranes in existence.  The goal is to reach 1,000 birds.  ICF is currently involved in a three-year project to update their facility outside of Baraboo to improve crane living areas, the visitor center and more.  Grunewald urged all to come and visit the center to learn more about cranes and efforts to keep them alive- a world-wide project with the ICF in the lead. 

The Optimist Club of Sauk Prairie meets on Wednesdays at 7 a.m. (noon the first Wednesday of the month) in the River Room of the Blue Spoon.  New members and visitors are always welcome!

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