Craig briefs: Craig doctor accepts associate professor position

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Craig medical professional Dennis Kinder recently accepted a position with Rocky Vista University, in Parker. Kinder will serve as an associate professor for the school and will supervise the Internal Medicine Resident’s Clinic.

Kinder's contract with The Memorial Hospital will expire March 15.

Kinder Family Clinic, 595 Russell St., will host a reception in his honor from 4 to 6 p.m. p.m. March 19. Anyone from the community is welcome to attend.

Cranes pay annual visit to the San Luis Valley

In the San Luis Valley, nature is again putting on one of its most memorable displays: the spring migration of greater sandhill cranes, according to a news release from Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

In appreciation of this wildlife spectacle, area organizations, businesses and wildlife agencies held the annual Monte Vista Crane Festival this past weekend. 

Cranes are among the oldest living species on the planet: Fossil records for cranes date back 9 million years.     

The cranes start arriving in mid-February, flying from their winter nesting ground, primarily in New Mexico. The large wetland areas, wildlife refuges and grain fields in the San Luis Valley draw in about 25,000 birds. The cranes stop in the valley to rest-up and re-fuel for their trip north to their summer nesting and breeding grounds in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.

The birds that migrate through Colorado are the largest of the North American sandhill subspecies standing 4-feet tall, having a wing-span of up to 7 feet and weighing in at 11 pounds.

For more information on the Monte Vista Crane Festival, see www.cranefest.com.

To learn more about sandhill cranes, go to cpw@state.co.us and click on the “wildlife species” tab.

Shooting enthusiasts reminded of closure

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is reminding shooting enthusiast that the Byers Canyon Shooting Range in Hot Sulphur Springs is now closed due to the agency’s continuing efforts to protect wintering elk and deer herds.

Because the animals have moved onto their winter range in and around the shooting facility during especially cold conditions this year, wildlife officials remind the public to give them plenty of space to help prevent additional stress that can lead to mortality, including the deaths of displaced animals due to road and railroad collisions.

The shooting range will remain closed until the animals move toward higher ground in the spring, which typically occurs in early April.

The Byers Canyon Shooting Range, which is owned and operated by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, is very popular with sportsmen from across the western slope, including the Front Range due to its proximity to the Denver metro area.

For more information about Colorado Parks and Wildlife shooting ranges and alternative places to shoot, go to www.wildlife.state.co.us/hunting/shootingranges/pages/shootingranges.aspx.

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