With the nickname "ribeye of the sky," sandhill cranes are considered one of the best tasting migratory birds hunted during the waterfowl season in some jurisdictions. Based on the best available science, both the Federal and Provincial Governments have determine that sandhill cranes can be harvested in Alberta without having a longterm negative impact on sandhill crane populations or populations of any other waterfowl species. Like any wild game, do not overcook or the meat will quickly turn tough and dry.
A good marinade enhances the natural flavours of any meat, makes it tender, and helps brown or sear the meat on the grill. Crane cooked medium-rare is ideal, but can be taken to medium—so a meat thermometer is recommended. Aim for 130 to 135°F. The meat will continue to cook when taken off the grill, so let it rest to keep it moist and tender.