Animal of the Month : February 2019
The stunning White Naped Crane is native to East Asia and was once far more widespread than today. It breeds in marshland and bogs and is very vulnerable to land drainage and pesticides. Wild populations have increased slightly in the recent past and with careful management there is reason for optimism.
Cranes have long been associated with good fortune and are revered as symbols of monogamy, fidelity and longevity. Our pair, located near the Wolf exhibit, can often be seen performing their “unison” call, a special dance and song believed to strengthen the bond between male and female. Winter to early spring is a great time to see this species as the birds begin to display together in readiness for the breeding season. They are hardy birds and even appear to enjoy the snowy weather we sometimes have in the Cotswolds.