Wildlife in Serengeti-Park
Grey Crowned Crane | Balearica regulorum
Cranes are among the oldest bird species in the world. In many cultures, they are considered a symbol of a long life. The South African Crowned Crane – also known as Grey-necked Crowned Crane – has a striking yellowish “feather crown”, black feathers on the head and a red flap on the throat. They are native to East and South Africa. You can find them in wetlands, savannahs and cultivated land.
Their breeding grounds and habitat are highly endangered in the wild: periods of drought, drainage, overgrazing, dam construction and pesticide use endanger the existence of these animals very much. Like other species of crane, the South African crowned crane is now one of the most endangered bird families, according to the World Conservation Union IUCN. However, there are protective efforts and breeding programs to strengthen the populations. All crane species have developed a special ability during evolution: the courtship dance! At the mating season, cranes show an elaborate choreography, with which they impress their potential partner. They spread their wings, showing their plumage, raise and lower the beak and bobble from one leg to the other. It’s amazing how these animals can do it all at the same time!