Birds of Rowe Sanctuary

Preserving and restoring critical bird habitat is what we do.

Sandhill Cranes. Photo: Richard Derevan

See the exciting details below about Crane Season 2019 to make your visit to Nebraska unforgettable!

Crane Season 2019 – February 16-April 15

Visitor Center Hours: Open daily 8:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Trail Availability:

  • All trails are CLOSED except West Trail.
  • West Trail OPENS ONLY in the morning after the cranes leave the river.
  • West Trail CLOSES at 4:30 p.m. before DST & 5:00 after DST.

Crane Viewing Opportunities

Use our on-line registration to select your activities. (Click the name of each activity for details.)

Guided Crane Viewing Experience

March 1-9 – 5:00 a.m. & 5:00 p.m. / March 10-April 7 – 6:00 a.m. & 6:00 p.m.

$35/person/trip (sales tax & fees not included)

Indoor Crane Viewing Experience (Evening Only)

March 1-9 – 5:00 p.m. / March 10-April 7 – 6:00 p.m.

$20/person (sales tax & fees not included)

Overnight Crane Photography Experience

March 15-April 6 – $250/person (sales tax & fees not included)

Capacity: 2

Arrival time: 4:45 p.m.

Guided Crane Photography Experience

March 15-April 7 – $75/person (sales tax & fees not included)

Arrival times: 6:00 a.m. & 6:00 p.m.

Click the link below for more information on all the exciting programs at Rowe Sanctuary and the Kearney area.

Events at Rowe Sanctuary

Crane Carnival

Saturday, March 16 – 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. Free admission (donations welcome)

Crane Behavior

March 1-9 – 3:30 p.m. / March 10-April 7 – 4:30 p.m.


Habitat Tours

Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays, March 1-April 7 – 1:30-3:00 p.m. $10/person

Wednesday Nights Family Night

March 6 – 5:00 pm / March 13, 20, 27 & April 3 – 6:00 p.m.

$10/person, children 4 & under free

Wine Tasting

March 9, 23, 30 & April 6 – 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. (Sponsored by Mac’s Creek Winery)

Rowe Sanctuary Speaker Series

  • Saturday, March 2 – 10:00 a.m. at Rowe Sanctuary - “Whooping Cranes, Interior Least Terns, and Piping Plovers: A Conversation about Nebraska’s Three Most Imperiled Birds.”  Mary Bomberger Brown, Tern and Plover Conservation Partnership.
  • Thursday, March 7 – 6:00 p.m. at the Kearney Public Library - “Past, Present, and Future Water Projects for the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program.” Justin Brei, Headwaters Corporation.
  • Saturday, March 9 – 10:00 a.m. at Rowe Sanctuary - “Central Flyway Spring Migration in the Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District.” Brad Krohn, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  • Thursday, March 14 – 6:00 p.m. at the Frank Museum - “Frank Conversation: Renewable Energy in Nebraska.” Will Stoutamire, Frank Museum, who will talk about the Kearney Hydro plant; Stanley Clouse, Kearney Mayor, who will talk about the solar array in town; and Lu Nelson, Center for Rural Affairs, who will talk about the current state of wind energy and some history of development in the state of Nebraska.
  • Thursday, March 21 – 6:00 p.m. at the Kearney Public Library - “Bird is the Word.” Jason St. Sauver, Audubon Nebraska Director of Education & Outreach.
  • Saturday, March 23 – 10:00 a.m. at Rowe Sanctuary - “Sandhill Crane Collisions with Power Lines Reduced with Ultraviolet Light.” James Dwyer, EDM International, Inc.
  • Thursday, March 28 – 6:00 p.m. at the Kearney Public Library - “Eye to Eye with Insects.”  Jonathan Nikkila, author of Bugs in My Backyard and Rowe Sanctuary board member.
  • Saturday, March 30 – 10:00 a.m. at Rowe Sanctuary - “Beyond Boundaries: Bird Conservation from Cities to Ranches.” Kristal Stoner, Audubon Nebraska Executive Director.
  • Saturday, April 6 – 10:00 a.m. at Rowe Sanctuary - “Photographing Birds Using the Camera on Your Cell Phone.” Don Brockmeier, photographer and long-time Rowe Sanctuary volunteer.
Plan Your Trip

Plan your trip

Tips to help you maximize your visit.

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Crane Cam

Crane Cam

Rowe Sanctuary hosts tens of thousands of sandhill cranes each spring. Watch it here!

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Birds of Rowe Sanctuary


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