Sandhill Crane tours offered at Barren River Lake State Resort Park on two weekends in January

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 Barren River Lake State Resort Park will host its Sandhill Crane tours on two weekends in late January, 2018.

Thousands of sandhill cranes make Barren River Lake a winter stop as they congregate in huge numbers to migrate. The lake’s exposed mud flats in winter provide the birds with a perfect spot to rest and socialize as they settle in for the night. Area farmlands and wet meadows offer plenty of food.

Sandhill cranes on a snowy day in Barren River

Sandhill cranes are tall, gray birds reaching heights up to 4 feet, weighing up to 12 pounds with a wingspan of 6-7 feet. They have two distinct features about them: one is their appearance of a crimson, red-crowned forehead, white cheeks, and fluffy rear end; the other is when in flight, the long dark legs trail behind and the long neck is kept straight out rather than tucked in towards the body.

Barren River offers van tours for guests to learn more about these intriguing birds with a unique sound. The tours will be Jan. 20-21 and Jan. 27, 2018. Registration is required due to limited seating.

Each weekend also includes an educational session conducted by a wildlife biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources on Friday evening at 7 p.m. Registration is $45 per adult and $30 per child 8-12 years old (must be at least 8 years old to go on van tours). The fee includes all educational sessions, a box lunch, and a T-shirt. Free guided nature hikes are also available at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Jan. 20 and 27.

Discounted senior tours for guests ages 55 and older will be on Wednesdays, Jan. 17 and Jan. 24, at $40 per person.

Families and individuals can enjoy other entertainment and lodging opportunities at the park. Barren River Lake State Resort Park features a lodge, cottages, the Driftwood Restaurant, a seasonal campground, 18-hole golf course, marina, fishing, tennis courts, hiking trails and gift shop. For more information about Barren River Lake and other Kentucky State Parks, visit www.parks.ky.gov

The park is located at 1149 State Park Road in Lucas. From the Louis B. Nunn Parkway, take the Highway 31E exit south toward Scottsville.

For more information contact Kody Thompson at kody.thompson@ky.gov or call 270-646-2151.

Kentucky State Parks

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