“Our members have 24/7 access to the camera portal,” said Douglas.

Along with cranes, members can spot an array of migratory birds such as pelicans, eagles, ducks, geese and even the critically endangered whooping crane each day.

While viewers cannot manipulate the camera, they can always adjust what the camera sees.

During the crane migration season, the cameraman is at the controls about half an hour before sunrise and an hour before sunset when the cranes come home to settle on the river for the night. Each tour lasts 90 minutes. Tours run Wednesday through Sunday when a guide can run the tour and answer questions.

“We can point out things that are happening and enforce the conversation with facts about the crane,” said Douglas.

Douglas said the Crane Trust will likely resume the virtual crane experience once the public blinds reopen during the migration season. But they also hope that the virtual crane experience will draw people to central Nebraska to see for themselves.

“More and more people are learning about migration and the importance of maintaining this habitat,” she said.

The virtual tours will continue until March 31st.

“It’s developing the way we do, but we’re getting tremendous interest and feedback,” said Douglas.