Alabamians already have the state’s blessing to kill: alligators, bears, beavers, bobcats, brants, clappers, coots, cougars, coyotes, deer, foxes, gallinules, groundhogs, mergansers, mourning doves, nutria, opossum, quails, rabbits (cottontail and swamp), raccoons, red wolves, ruffed grouse, snipes, soras, squirrels, Virginia rails, wild ducks, geese, turkeys and pigs and woodcocks.
There’s any number of ways to describe the recent addition of sandhill cranes to the list, but “exciting,” as someone with Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries put it, isn’t one of them.
Sandhill cranes mate for life — that can mean more than two decades when they aren’t gunned down — and stay with their partners year-round. They build nests together and share incubation duties. Chicks stay with their parents for nearly a year.
They’ve also lived in peace in Alabama for more than a century. They should keep that right.