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Things to Do

Crane Trust Nature Center

Enjoy the outdoors

Your headquarters for the spring migration of the sandhill cranes every March, the Crane Trust Nature & Visitor Center is open year-round. Hike on their trails along the Platte River, rest in the butterfly garden, or enjoy wildlife-themed artwork on your visit. Located right off Interstate 80 (Exit 305) in central Nebraska, it also offers clean bathrooms and a gift shop. 

10,000 acres of conservation

The Crane Trust is primarily a conservation organization, preserving habitat for endangered whooping cranes, river otters, sandhill cranes, and many other plants and animals on more than 10,000 acres along the Platte River. This includes a herd of genetically important bison. The Crane Trust's fully-functioning research program works to increase diversity in their bison herd by introducing new lineages from other North American conservation herds. This helps ensure the resiliency of the species. Currently, the Crane Trust's herd represents genetic lineages from Yellowstone National Park, Wind Cave, Teddy Roosevelt National Parks, as well as Fort Niobrara and Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge. 

North American wildlife migration

Every February, sandhill cranes begin their spring migration north from Texas, New Mexico, and northern Mexico. Roughly 1,000 miles into that migration, they stop for a 2-3 week break on the Platte River in central Nebraska to refuel before continuing to their northern nesting grounds. While in Nebraska, they will feed in cornfields and marshes near the river. The Crane Trust offers viewing-blind tours during the month of March to experience this great North America migration up close. 

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