Winter is the season of Sandhill Cranes
It is common knowledge in New Mexico that, if you want to see Sandhill Cranes in the winter, Bosque del Apache is the place to be! This is true but.... some of the cranes spend the winter in Los Lunas.
Edeal Dairy in Los Lunas
If there's one thing Sandhill Cranes love, it's cows! The Edeal Dairy in Los Lunas, New Mexico is situated very close to the Rio Grande River Bosque and, of course, the other thing cranes love is the river. The Edeal Dairy is a huge dairy operation with thousands of cows and the dairy is surrounded by agricultural fields. In other words, everything a Sandhill Crane could want. Between the cows and the crops there is an abundance of food for the cranes and they can be seen en masse not only in the fields where the crops were but also in the enclosures with the cattle. In fact, there are so many of them hanging out with the cattle that I suspect they are something of a nuisance to the dairy workers.
Closer to home
While nothing can compete with the splendor of the wildlife at Bosque del Apache, it is way out near San Antonio, New Mexico which, for me, is an hour and a half drive. Edeal Dairy is only 15 minutes away. That being said, I should point out that the dairy is private property and photographers should not presume to go tromping all over the place with their cameras just because they like birds. However, for those with a good telephoto lens, there is excellent viewing available from Edeal Road without ever intruding onto private property. There are also lots of neighbors surveilling the area so it's worthwhile to bring your longest lens and to stay on the road.
I am DeAnna Vincent, fine art and portrait photographer in Los Lunas, New Mexico. These are the photos from my everyday adventures.