Zookeeper Chris Crowe mates with Walnut the Crane for life
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Zookeeper Mates with Murderous Crane for Life, and No, It’s Not a Joke

After it was first released some years ago, the story of Walnut the Crane and her soulmate, zookeeper Chris Crowe (c’mon, Crowe? also not a joke), is making the social media rounds once again.

The short and dirty (and believe you me, it is dirty) is this:

Walnut hatched in a bird sanctuary in Wisconsin in 1981 after her wild-born parents had been rescued. As she was raised by humans, she imprinted on them. This meant she did not want to mate with other cranes, and allegedly, she murdered two male cranes with whom she was paired at an endangered species habitat in Virginia, “their bellies sliced open by her sharp claws.” Having imprinted on humans, Walnut preferred to mate with one, and zookeeper Crowe (again, really, a bird name? but yeah) caught her eye. Now the dude “mates” with her, artificially inseminating her and even taking turns sitting on fake eggs with her after the real ones are whisked away.

All this according to a 2018 Washington Post article.

CHRIS CROWE (why is that his name???) IS MARRIED TO A BIRD. FOR LIFE. BECAUSE WHITE-NAPED CRANES MATE FOR LIFE AND THE BIRD THINKS IT’S A HUMAN OR CHRIS IS A CRANE AND I CAN’T.

Also, please try not to die at the following from the Washington Post:

“The zookeeper grabs a fistful of grass and tosses it into the air. This is Crowe’s sexiest move — a sly reference to building a nest together. Walnut looks up, curiosity glinting in her marigold eyes, but then she returns to probing the soft, wet ground with her bark-colored bill. She’s simply not feeling romantic, and who can blame her?”

Or especially this:

“Kneeling behind the bird, Crowe rests a hand gently on her back. Then he starts rubbing her thighs, rhythmically, almost pornographically. Thirty seconds elapse — it feels much longer — before Walnut steps away from Crowe, fixes a few out-of-place feathers, and then stretches out her wings, asking for another go-round.”

I don’t know what kind of human on bird smut the Washington Post is peddling these days, but I’m calling the police.

In all honesty, though, it is kind of interesting. And disturbing. But also interesting.

I just have a few questions:

  • Do you think Chris has a relationship outside of Walnut, and what does his partner think of this?
  • Does Chris have any human children, or is he straight kicking it with endangered bird progeny?
  • Does Chris toss a ball with his baby bird children?
  • Did Chris purchase a family plot for he and Walnut to be together in eternity?
  • Is Chris OK? Does he live every day in fear of pissing Walnut off? Does he lie awake in his nest every night and wonder, “How? Why? What life choices landed me here, sexually arousing a glamourous chicken?”

I’m just kidding, Chris Crowe (again, why). He sounds like a stand-up guy. Instead of doing it all for the nookie, Chris does it all to save an entire species. (And maybe for the nookie, I don’t know, I don’t know what Chris is actually into here.)

There’s definitely something admirable about that.