International Crane Foundation


Flying with Cranes

Eurasia: > Flying with Cranes

The Black-necked Crane’s range is among the least understood of all crane species. More than one-third of the world’s population of this threatened species winters in Yunnan and Guizhou Provinces in southwest China. Numbering over 3,000, this population disperses north to high altitude wetlands in central China for breeding during the summer months. However, despite past studies of this population, researchers still have many questions about the birds’ migration routes and breeding areas.

During the first two-years of this study, eight birds were fitted with satellite transmitters, enabling researchers to follow the birds during their annual migrations. From these data, researchers are identifying the birds’ migration routes and important staging, stop-over, and nesting locations. Researchers are also conducting an ecology study of the birds, examining the habitat used by the cranes along their migration routes and at their breeding and wintering areas.

To complement the migration and ecology studies, educators have developed classroom and web-based materials to promote awareness of Black-necked Cranes and their conservation in China and abroad. Included among these resources are online maps and progress reports from Chinese researchers in the field that detail the 2005 and 2006 spring migrations.

We would like to thank Mr. Sam Evans, the Rock Family, and the Hamill Family Foundation for their generous support of this project.

2007 Spring Migration Map
Click here to view a map of the banded Black-necked Crane’s 2007 spring migration.

Chinese language website
Click here to view the Flying with Cranes website developed for students in China and the United States by Yunnan Normal University in Kunming. (Note that it may take a few minutes to open the site)

ICF is partnering with Signals of Spring to map the movements of four Black-necked Cranes that were banded in late winter 2006.
Spring of Signal
Click on the link to the left to view the interactive map developed by Signals of Spring for the 2007 spring migration.
Flying with Cranes Migration Activity
For wildlife species such as the Black-necked Crane that migrate long distances over remote areas, we still have many unanswered questions about their migration. Through this activity, you are invited to join researchers in the United States and China Read morearrow

Flying with Migration

Environmental Education
Members of the Environmental Education Center at Yunnan Normal University in Kunming have completed an education study to increase awareness of Black-necked Cranes and their conservation in communities surrounding Dashanbao Nature Reserve. Read morearrow

Environmental Education

Ecology Study
The Chinese Academy of Science’s Kunming Institute of Zoology and the National Bird Banding Center in Beijing are conducting ecology studies of the banded Black-necked Cranes as part of the larger migration study. Read morearrow

Ecology Study

Contact Us
For more information about this or other projects coordinated by ICF in China, please contact the ICF …Read morearrow