Scientific Name: Grus antigone
Habitat: Northern and central India, Nepal, and Pakistan
Diet: These omnivorous birds eat insects, aquatic plants and crustaceans, seeds, berries, and small vertebrates.
Height: 45-78 inches
Wingspan: 9 feet
Weight: 26 pounds
The sarus crane is the world’s tallest flying bird. In many Asian cultures, symbolizes marriage because it performs elaborate courtship dances and mates for life. Like other cranes, the “dancing” includes bowing, hopping, wing flapping, and stick or grass tossing.
Sarus cranes return to the same breeding grounds for up to five years. The ground nests consist of marsh vegetation and are found in the shallow waters of natural and man-made wetlands. Both parents construct the nest, incubate the (usually two) eggs for 31 to 34 days, and raise the young. Chicks are able to fly at around three months.