Sarus Crane (Grus antigone)

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Sarus crane
© WWF-Canon / Martin HARVEY

IUCN Red List: Vulnerable CITES Appendix II

Sarus Cranes appear on the bas-reliefs of the Bayon Temple at Angkor Wat, carved more than 600 ... / ©: WWF
Sarus Cranes appear on the bas-reliefs of the Bayon Temple at Angkor Wat, carved more than 600 years ago by Khmer craftsmen, who were recording pictures of everyday life and events in Angkorian society.
© WWF
The Sarus Crane reaches a standing height of nearly 1.8m (or 6 feet) and is the tallest flying bird in the world.

The Central Indochina Dry Forests are home to the Eastern Sarus which were historically widespread on expanses of wetlands throughout Vietnam, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Burma, Yunnan and Thailand.

It is believed that less than 1000 individuals still exist in Indochina.

Wildlife trade
A lower threat is the wildlife trade of eggs, chicks and adults, and hunting of eggs and adults for food. Also, high demand from Thailand of the Sarus Crane is a major constant threat to the existence of this species.

The bird is easily hurt during captivity which increases its mortality rate. Hunting for foods and poisoning add to these dangerous situations.

Education and awareness raising
Education and awareness campaigns together with stronger law enforcement in key sites seem to have been largely successful in lowering this threat in their breeding areas. Conserving their habitat is also an important conservation priority.

As a result of all these efforts some measures have been carried out by the government such a Sarus Crane Protected Area setup in Siem Reap province of northern Cambodia.

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