Yes, Florida sandhill cranes are a threatened species in Florida. There is an estimated 4,000 – 5,000 cranes remaining in Florida. This is hard to believe when you live in my community. We see these large birds everyday as they stroll through the neighborhood. They think they own the place! If they are crossing the road when you are driving, you can just wait for them until the casually make their way to the other side.
If they are digging in the yard, then you probably have some insect pests. They probe grassy areas for worms, mole crickets,and grubs with their long beaks. They eat grains, seeds and berries as well. They do not fish like herons, but will eat crayfish, and frogs at the edge of the lake in the shallow water.
Cranes are threatened because of the loss and deterioration of prime habitat – prairies and marshlands – caused by development. Supporting the preservation of these habitats will help them recover.