Better late than never, they say. So here they are:
We saw them first, far across a lagoon in the bushes at Reifel Island. They noticed us, too, and waded over, probably because they saw me feeding the mallards. We weren't expecting them, and had walked on down the path, but they hurried after us, and demanded goodies.
There were a pair of adults, and one youngster. The parents kept the colt, as sandhill chicks are called, protected between them the whole time. They didn't seem to mind us coming close, as long as we moved slowly and kept on dumping bird seed for them.
The young sandhill was as tall as the adults, but didn't have the red head or grey neck. And the neck was visibly thinner; its got a ways to go before it can kill its own food. The parents would feed it until it was able to fly, at about two or three months old. It will live with them for the first year.
This year, 2010, a sandhill pair at Reifel hatched two chicks the beginning of June. I don't know if this is the same family. However, the colt still has the juvenal downy crown.
Neck and head of young sandhill, still shedding down.
Adult head, grey feathers and red bald patch.