Raindrops and Sandhills

By Jim Morris

Through this bumpy road in our history, I believe there’s a greater need than ever before to seek out joy.
Where do you find your joy?

I want to share two discoveries this week: raindrops and Sandhill Cranes. The rain that has fallen in our valley is such welcome relief as we grapple with severe drought. The Sandhill Cranes are one of the most spectacular of the nearly 230 wildlife species that are found in local rice fields.

The Webster’s Dictionary definition of a Sandhill Crane could simply read as follows: joy. Here’s an example of just how much they enjoy their stay in the Sacramento Valley:

These birds are elegant and exuberant. Their gorgeous plumage, trumpeting vocalizations and playful attitude make then an unforgettable sight. At close to four feet tall and with a five foot wingspan, they are attention grabbers, and for me, pure joy!

Hopefully more rain will fall and more cranes will arrive. Until then, it’s great to see the vital habitat from rice fields; even more important this year with so few options for our 10 million visiting birds during their Pacific Flyway migration.


Jim Morris is Communications Manager for the California Rice Commission. Jim has worked in communications for more than 20 years. When he’s not on the job, he enjoys his family, faith, football, outrageous monster stories and running marathons.