Red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis), also called the Manchurian crane or Japanese crane

Japanese cranes

The crane is one of these symbols coming through the centuries to feed Japanese culture. It’s everywhere. Usually called tanchōzuru, it is said to live 1000 years. It will be found on coins, bills, company logos (e.g. Japan Airlines), but also on many ukiyo-e, traditional paper prints from woodblock engravings.

Inevitably, crane flocks are met with small crowds of photographers (Japan is photo paradise) or of mere fans, like at Ottawa Bridge where you will need to arrive early (understand “well before sunrise”) to reserve a location to spot cranes when they take off after a night spent in the middle of the river.

Red-crowned crane, also called Manchurian crane or Japanese crane; Grue du Japon, grue de Mandchourie ou encore grue à couronne rouge (Grus japonensis)
Hokkaido, Japan North island, January/February 2019.

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