White-naped Cranes ~
White-naped cranes are large cranes native to grasslands and wetlands of eastern Asia. The white-naped crane breeds on the borders of Russia, Mongolia, and China and migrates south to winter in southern China, Japan, and the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea. This species is named for the large section of white plumage extending from the back up to the back of the head. White-naped cranes feed upon seeds, roots, insects, and small vertebrates in the wild.
White-naped crane populations are considered vulnerable in the wild with only approximately 6,500 individuals remaining due to conversion of wetlands to agricultural operations and hunting. The Good Zoo participates in the white-naped crane Species Survival Plan breeding program with other Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited institutions to ensure a sustainable population of this rare species in human care.
We take care of a pair of young white-naped cranes at the zoo. The male is named Barry, and the female is named Pi. We feed them a special zoo crane pellet, oats, and cracked corn. Their favorite enrichment items are thawed frozen pinky mice, smelt, and probing for insects and their larvae in their habitat.