Kansas has extended its hours for hunting sandhill cranes, raising concerns among conservationists about the potential impact on the endangered whooping crane, which migrates through some of same areas in Kansas as sandhill cranes.
The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism lengthened the hours for sandhill crane hunting from sunrise to sunset. The hours had been 30 minutes after sunrise until 2 p.m. from opening day in early November through Nov. 30. The hours were sunrise to 2 p.m. from Dec. 1 through the end of the season in early January.
Tom Bidrowski, the agency’s migratory game bird program manager, said the extended hours approved earlier this month were sought by hunters who prize the sandhill crane for its meat, which is considered a delicacy and dubbed the “the rib-eye of the sky.” He said the longer hours were not expected to impact the endangered whooping cranes, one of the rarest birds in North America.