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White Naped Crane - for nglen

White Naped Crane - for nglen
Photo Information
Copyright: James Parker (Jamesp) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-01-09
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 1Ds MkII, Canon EF 300mm f2.8 USM IS
Exposure: f/5.0, 1/400 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Gruiformes (Turnalar, Crane-like), Wildlife of Japan [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-04-24 7:22
Viewed: 6361
Points: 56
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This is for Nick Glen who has given us all so many lovely bird postings.

In case anyone hasn't guessed I am visiting each continent this week with my postings (I am counting the South Georgia, Penguin Braiding shot as Antartica - it is owned by the UK, but only three people live there). So far I have posted, Africa, Australasia, Antarctica, South America, Asia (with this one) so only Europe and North America to go.....

I have posted White Naped Cranes before, but this is, in my opinion, a much better 'descriptive' shot of the species. I hope you like it.

White-naped Cranes are the only crane species with pinkish legs and a dark gray and white striped neck. The white hind neck and nape, surrounded by an extensively reddish face patch, also serve to identify this species Adult plumage is dark gray and wings and wing coverts are silvery gray. Males and females are virtually indistinguishable, although in breeding pairs males tend to be slightly larger in size than females.

Juvenile’s heads and necks are covered with cinnamon brown feathers while the tail and flight feather are blackish gray.


White-naped Cranes breed in northeastern Mongolia, northeastern China, and adjacent areas of southeastern Russia. Birds in the western portion of the breeding range migrate south through China, resting at areas on the Yellow River delta, and wintering at wetlands in the middle Yangtze River valley. Approximately 2,000 birds in the eastern portion of the breeding range migrate south through the Korean peninsula. Several hundred remain on wintering grounds in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea. The remainder continues on to the Japanese island of Kyushu where they rely heavily upon an artificial feeding station located outside the city of Izumi.

Habitat & Ecology:

Breeding habitat includes shallow wetlands and wet meadows in broad river valleys, along lake edges, and in lowland steppes or mixed forest-steppe areas. White-naped Cranes nest, roost, and feed in shallow wetlands and along wetland edges, foraging in adjacent grasslands or farmlands. During migration and on their wintering grounds, they use rice paddies, mudflats, other wetlands and agricultural fields. White-naped Cranes are excellent diggers. The White-naped Crane is often found in the company of other crane species that also occur within their range, including Red-crowned, Hooded, Demoiselle, and Eurasian Cranes.

Mated pairs of cranes, including White-naped Cranes, engage in unison calling, which is a complex and extended series of coordinated calls. The birds stand in a specific posture, usually with their heads thrown back and beaks skyward during the display. In White-naped Cranes, the female initiates the display and utters two calls for each male call. The male always lifts up his wings over his back during the unison call while the female keeps her wings folded at her sides. All cranes engage in dancing, which includes various behaviors such as bowing, jumping, running, stick or grass tossing, and wing flapping. Dancing can occur at any age and is commonly associated with courtship, however, it is generally believed to be a normal part of motor development for cranes and can serve to thwart aggression, relieve tension, and strengthen the pair bond.

Nests are mounds of dried sedges and grasses in open wetlands. Females usually lay two eggs and incubation (by both sexes) lasts 28-32 days. The male takes the primary role in defending the nest against possible danger. Chicks fledge (first flight) at 70-75 days.


All cranes are omnivorous. White-naped Cranes feed on insects, small vertebrates, seeds, roots and tubers, wetland plants, and waste grains. At the artificial feeding station at Izumi in Japan, White-naped cranes thrive upon rice and other cereal grains. In the Han River estuary (Korea) and at Poyang Lake (China) they excavate the tubers of several species of sedges.


Habitat loss and degradation are critical problems throughout the range of the White-naped Crane. Destruction of wetlands due to agricultural expansion in the breeding range poses the most significant threat. Critical habitat is also threatened by a proposed series of dams in the Amur River basin and the Three Gorges Dam in China. The possibility of a military conflict in the Korean DMZ poses an additional threat, while the high concentration of cranes at the Izumi Feeding Station in Japan increases the risk of a serious disease outbreak.

NB The data reads 420mm lense - it was taken with my (being repaired) 300mm 2.8 + 1.4x converter,

pekkavalo1, Dis. Ac., goldyrs, boreocypriensis, XOTAELE, jaycee, eqshannon, haraprasan, bobcat08, rousettus, zulfu, gracious, CeltickRanger, Adanac, NinaM, gannu, inked, marhowie, Argus has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi James,

Very nice picture of White Naped Crane. Good composition, pose, POV, sharpness of details, lighting and natural bright colours = perfect!



Hello James,
We are in Japan;-). Very 'descriptive' image as you mentioned in your note.
Well done

nice close up, TFS Ori

Hi James,

Good dedication.
Razor sharp etc, a beautiful crane are this one.


A lovely shot, indeed, James!Perfect pose, exceleent saturation, and just the right exposure...

Hello James,
A lovely and splendid shot of this beautifull White Naped Crane which I have not seen before!
And nice dedication of our bird expert friend Nick!


Hola James.
Espectaculares detalles y magníficos colores muy bien saturados.
Buena nota.
Saludos amigo, JL.

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-04-24 10:12]

Hi James,

A really nice dedication to Nick and a superb shot of the Crane. I love the pose - the legs and bent head are wonderful. Beautiful colors and fine details. The eye and beak are marvelous. An unusual post for you and I would love to see more.


Japan has so many and varied animals, birds and flowers....plants and more. an amazing place. My son and grandkids just got back from a 2 week stay with his mother-in-law...but he was glad to be back becuase his kids, our grandkids, speak more Japanese than he does since they have been to bi-lingual preschool and now school...but one thing Chris told me was that beyond his understanding...and what he thought, this was one lovely country and you, in some of your mammal and aviary images have certainly displayed it well James...Much appreciated. I wish my son would be as proficient in cameras...

Hi James,
A beautiful capture of this lovely crane. The bird is surely beautiful and an excellent dedication. Very well composed with sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hello James,

One bird in a very simple grey (mud) enviroment. Perfect to show this bird at this way. Your object is wonderful, razorsharp and ful of fine details. Excellent saturation. Well done. Have a nice day and TFS BOB

Hello James
nice to see again japanese crane. I added it to the theme Gruiformes.
Your capture excellent with wonderful sharp details, POV, composition and superb colors. It is also great dedication to our common friend Nicholas. thanks for sharing, best wishes


I am sue that my father with be made up with this dedication. You are quite the explorer, am lokking forward to the following continents. Apart from all that a lovely subject holding a top poise.


  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-04-24 13:08]

Hello James.
Great capture. All are perfect! TFS.

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-04-24 13:33]

Hello James. A very big thank you for this dedication to me , I am very honoured to have this from someone with your talent. And a great picture it is to. such unusual colour markings on the head. and a very nice POV .TFS. with interesting notes .

Many thanks again Nick..

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-04-24 13:49]

Excellent shot of this White-Naped Crane!
Nick will love this!
Very good detail in the feathers and skin.
Excellent light and natural colours.
Great DOF too.
Very, very well done, James!


Hello James,
Many thanks for this beautiful image of the White Naped Crane with such a nice pose of it!
sharp image with wonderful colour and superb details
a perfect dedication to our dear friend Nick!
best regards to you always

hello James

beautiful shot of the White Naped Crane, fine POV and DOF,
i love the pose of the bird searching for food,
great sharpness and details of the subject and the
bottom of the foreground, TFS


  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-04-24 16:32]

Hello James,
Your very imformative notes are only surpassed by your excellent image. Outstanding work James, thank you.

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  • NinaM Gold Star Critiquer [C: 773 W: 3 N: 1157] (4077)
  • [2008-04-24 17:29]

Superb shot, James, it's almost three-dimensional as the bird against the blurred background seems to pop out from the background. Beautiful, with great colours, it is perfect. And most of all, thank you for this visit of the Earth!


  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2008-04-24 21:55]

What a beautiful crane, James.
I don't think I have seen this one here yet, maybe on National Geographic.
An impressive capture with clear details in good light.
Cranes fascinate me. We get to see sandhill cranes here.
I really enjoyed seeing a different kind on your shot.
TFS. : )

Hello James,
This is a fine pose, showing an elegant bird!
Great details in the plumage and colours are vivid and well recorded...
DoF spot on isolates the subject nicely from the background, a fine 3-D effect!
Pablo -

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-04-25 3:50]

Hello James,
Excellent and lovely. What a beautiful eyes it has with red mark on it. Good sharp picture. Ganesh

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  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-04-25 10:32]

Hello James,
Very beautiful photo of this White-naped Crane. This is the best photo of this bird I've ever seen. Great sharpness and natural colours. Very good POV.

  • Great 
  • inked Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 132 W: 0 N: 249] (771)
  • [2008-04-25 23:35]

hi James,
superb capture of this crane.. great color and detail.. interesting pose caught and nice plain BG keeps it uncluttered making the crane really stand out. well done and tfs!

Great sharpness...wonderful pose! ALl your work is always magnificent. I can learn so much from you!.

Hi James,
Excellent details and DOF isolating the crane in your frame.
I like the mid-step pose..Wonderful coloration in this one.
Well done,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-04-27 3:33]

Hello James,
Not only descriptive but a beautiful shot of the White-naped Crane, the pose and POV being superb and an excellent contrast of the crane against the crane-trampled mud.
Great shot to see and thanks for sharing it!
Nice tribute to Nick too.

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