Red-crowned crane

(Grus japonensis)


Red-crowned crane IUCN ENDANGERED (EN)


Facts about this animal

They have bright white bodies with black necks and wing feathers, forehead and crown are covered with bare red skin. They have a long olive-green or greenish-horn bill and long grayish-black legs. Males and females are alike in appearance, although males tend to be slightly larger in size. They stand about 1.5 m tall, with an average 7-10 kg in weight and a wing span of about 2.5 m.

Did you know?
that the Red-crowned cranes form lifelong breeding pairs and return to the same nest site year after year? They use very elaborate dances for courting and communication between each other.


Class AVES
Suborder GRUES
Name (Scientific) Grus japonensis
Name (English) Red-crowned crane
Name (French) Grue du Japon
Name (German) Mandschurenkranich
Name (Spanish) Grulla ManchĂș
CITES Status Appendix I
CMS Status Appendix I



Photo Copyright by
Trisha Shears



Range Eastern Asia (Japan, China, Mongolia, Russia and the Korean Peninsula)
Habitat Marshes and swamps with relatively deep water and in croplands
Wild population Approx. 2,750 individuals, 1,650 mature individuals (2007) (Red List IUCN 2011)
Zoo population About 700 in zoos around the world, 263 reported to ISIS (2007)

In the Zoo

Red-crowned crane


How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 17 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
Mike Souza

Why do zoos keep this animal

The red-crowned crane is an endangered species with a relatively small wild population. An International Studbook has been established in 1971, and four regions operate coordinated ex situ conservation breeding programmes resulting in a zoo population corresponding to about one-third of the wild population.