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Banding

We attach uniquely numbered bands for identification of individual cranes. By observing banded individuals, we learn vital information about ecology of red-crowed cranes.

Attaching a tag with a unique number is a good way to identify individual wild animals without disturbing their activities. With birds (including cranes), the numbered tag comes in the form of a metal or plastic band attached to a leg. Identification of individuals is a valuable method for collecting information that cannot be obtained otherwise. Examples of such information are the life span, survivorship, and movement of individuals.

Capturing cranes
Capturing adult cranes involves some risks. Thus, we have focused on capturing chicks and juveniles before they learn to fly (up to about two months after hatching).

Banding & measurement
During banding and measurement, we use a head-cover so as to reduce the stress level of captured birds.


Release
Once released, the banded bird rejoins its parents.

Old bands Up until 2004, we attached a small metal band on the right leg and a large plastic band on the left leg. However, the plastic band tended to get damaged and fall off.

New bands
Since 2005, we have been attaching one large metal band on the right leg. The band is made of aluminum alloy.

Findings
As the number of records of banded individuals increase, we are able to update our understanding about the ecology of the cranes.


The banding project started in 1988. The bands have been supplied by Yamashina Institute for Ornithology. Many volunteers have supported the banding project. With our continuing effort, currently more than 10% of individuals in the population can be identified using the bands.

Red-crowned Crane ConservancyRed-crowned Crane Conservancy


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