The sixth annual Chrissiesmeer Crane Festival, held recently in June, was “hatched” after International Crane Foundation Co-Founder George Archibald visited this small town in the Mpumalanga Highveld of eastern South Africa. Since George’s visit, the festival has flourished. The festival is an opportunity to celebrate and raise awareness of cranes and other threatened species and their habitats in the area. It also highlights Chrissiesmeer as an important bird area and an eco-tourism destination.
The festival included crane field trips, talks and presentations, and community and student involvement. People thoroughly enjoyed the Birds of Prey flight show given by the Dullstroom Bird of Prey Centre. The African Crane Conservation Program Team and other Endangered Wildlife Trust colleagues and volunteers assisted throughout the day with kids’ activities, including coloring of Grey Crowned Crane masks and pin the crown on the Crowned Crane. About 150 people attended the festival. For the second year in a row, attendees spotted a family of Blue Cranes (see below) in the same area as 80 Grey Crowned Cranes – an exciting discovery!
Story submitted by Steven Segang, Highveld Field Officer for the International Crane Foundation/Endangered Wildlife Trust Partnership. Click here to learn more about our work in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Read a personal story from Steven about his internship at the International Crane Foundation that helped launch his career.