The crane - Wanted poster


Surname: Crane
Other namesPhotos: Gray crane, European crane
Latin name: Grus grus
class: Birds
size: 90 - 120cm
mass: 4 - 7 kg
Older: 15 - 25 years
Appearance: greyish-white
Sexual dimorphism: Yes
Nutrition type: Omnivore (omnivor)
food: Fish, rodents, snails, worms
distribution: Europe and Asia
original origin:
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
habitat: prefers wet meadows, bogs and swamps
natural enemies: /
sexual maturity: about the age of three
mating season: February - April
breeding season: 28 - 35 days
social behavior: Swarm animal
Threatened with extinction: Yes
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.

Interesting about the crane

  • The crane describes its own family of running birds native to northern and eastern Europe as well as large parts of Asia.
  • Although cranes used to be widespread in Central and Western Europe, today these birds are found almost exclusively in Scandinavia and Russia.
  • As migratory birds, the extremely sociable cranes move in October in large swarms in their southern winter quarters in North or Northeast Africa. They interrupt their journey every year to rest at the same rest areas for two or three weeks.
  • The towing groups are clearly recognizable by the characteristic wedge formation and the typical calls that recall trumpet tones.
  • Cranes grow up to 120 centimeters long and reach a wingspan of up to two and a half meters. Despite their majestic size, they only weigh a maximum of seven kilograms.
  • The crane is similar to the stork of slender physique and has a long neck and beak, long legs and an unfeathered, striking red plate and white-black drawing on the head.
  • Its plumage is dyed in different shades of gray, with rare specimens also having a white or almost black plumage. As a rule, only the neck and head are covered by black feathers.
  • The plumage of the wing tips is unusually long and gives the impression that cranes have a bushy tail.
  • In contrast to all other bird species, cranes only moult every two years. In the period of the spring change, which takes place in summer, they are unable to fly.
  • As omnivores, cranes feed on small fish and mammals such as mice and other rodents, as well as insects, snails, amphibians and worms. Grains, berries, nuts, various herbs and vegetables, blades of grass, plant roots and harvest seeds also serve as important food sources.
  • During the courtship season, the male courts with pronounced and fascinating wedding dances for the favor of the female. After mating, the female lays two or three eggs in a slightly raised nest in the swamp, which are alternately incubated by both partners.
  • The young birds hatch after about a month and leave the nest after only a few days.
  • Cranes live with the once-found partner in lasting couple relationships until death together.
  • Mature cranes have few natural predators, but young animals occasionally fall prey to foxes, ravens, crows or other predatory birds. The greatest danger, however, comes from humans, who destroy the natural habitats of cranes by draining and dams.
  • In ancient Egypt, cranes were worshiped and sacrificed as divine birds. Even today they have strong symbolic power in China and Japan as well as some countries in Scandinavia.