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10 endangered birds of America

Whooping crane

Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

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Whooping crane

The endangered whooping crane, or Grus Americana, is a critically threatened bird that has enjoyed a significant return in recent years. Habitat loss and hunting left only 15 whopping cranes alive in 1941, but with the help of biologists, their numbers rebounded to as many as 214 in 2005. However, due to a lack of adult birds, the animals needed to be taught how to migrate north to their breeding grounds. Since 2009, 77 whopping cranes have followed a lightweight plane from western Florida to Wisconsin and back each year.