February 18, 2012 by staff
Red-Crowned Crane, The Red-crowned Crane (Grus japonensis), also called the Japanese Crane or Manchurian Crane , is a large east Asian crane and among the rarest cranes in the world. In some parts of its range, it is known as a symbol of luck, longevity and fidelity.
Adult Red-crowned Cranes are snow white with black to the wings (appears almost like a black tail when standing, but the real tail feathers are white), blackish to the head and neck, and a patch of red skin on the crown.
This patch of skin becomes brighter red when the crane becomes angry or excited. This species is among the largest cranes, typically measuring about 158 cm (62 in) tall, 136 cm (54 in) in length (from bill to tail tip) and spanning 242.5 cm (95.5 in) across the wings. Typical body weight can range from 7 to 10 kg (15 to 22 lb), with males being slightly larger than females and weight ranging higher just prior to migration.
On average, it is the heaviest crane species, although both the Sarus and Wattled Crane can grow taller and exceed this species in linear measurements. The maximum known weight of the Red-crowned Crane is 15 kg (33 lb).
In the spring and summer, the migratory populations of the Red-crowned Crane breed in Siberia (eastern Russia), northeastern China and occasionally in northeastern Mongolia (i.e., Mongol Daguur Strictly Protected Area). Normally the crane lays 2 eggs, with only one surviving. Later, in the fall, they migrate in flocks to Korea and east-central China to spend the winter. Vagrants have also been recorded in Taiwan. In addition to the migratory populations, a resident population is found in eastern Hokkaid?? in Japan. The habitats used are marshes, riverbanks, rice fields, and other wet areas.
The crane eats small amphibians, aquatic invertebrates, insects, and plants that grow in marshes and swamps.
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