Population survey of the Sarus crane to be conducted in Myanmar

Sarus cranes, the endangered species, are native to Myanmar. Photo: Thandar
Sarus cranes, the endangered species, are native to Myanmar. Photo: Thandar

A POPULATION survey of the Sarus crane (Grus antigone sharpie) will be conducted in the specie’s habitats in seven states and regions including the Ayeyawady Delta by the International Crane Foundation in cooperation with the Zoological Department of Yangon University (YU).
“We can observe some
limited migrations at an Orchard Farm, a natural fish breeding pond, located in Malet to Village, Maubin District, Ayeyawady Region,” said Dr Myo
Sanda Win of YU who is currently visiting the farm for the survey.
The Sarus crane is a native bird of Myanmar, mostly
found in the Ayeyawady Region and Indawgyi Lake, the country’s largest natural freshwater lake.
Thanda, a local observer said, “I saw two Sarus cranes last year within the compound of the Orchard Farm and I started taking notes about them.”
The Sarus Crane is the tallest crane species and of all flying birds, with a height of about 176 cm. They feed on wide range of wetland plant materials, seeds and grains. They tend to breed inland but always in wet areas.
The specie lives mainly on wetlands such as canals, ponds, marshes, even near humans. They can be found in cultivated areas too, and also in high-altitude wetlands.
During the dry season the Sarus Crane is found in shallow wetlands, rice fields or wet grasslands.
The Sarus crane is included on the list of endangered bird species as the population has notably declined.  The rare bird can be found in Myanmar, Cambodia, Viet Nam and India in Southeast Asia.
The number of Myanmar’s total bird species will reach 1,114, including new species found within the late five years. Forty-nine are in danger of extinction, a bird observation agency said at a conference last year.
The Orchard Farm has received greater interest from both local and international bird observers. According to the 2013 survey, more than 140 species covering painted stork, pelican and other winter birds reside in the natural fish breeding pond.—Thi Thi Min

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