Afrikaans name: Bloukraanvoël
This bird has the honour of being South Africa's national bird!
The Blue Crane is sometimes referred to as the Stanley or Paradise Crane.
It is over 1 metre tall and can have a wingspan of 2 metres.
The Blue Crane prefers grassland areas at higher altitude. During winter they move to lower altitudes. It is also found on farmlands but does not tolerate disturbances.
The Blue Crane feeds on grasses and sedges as well as insects.
These birds have an elaborate courtship routine with the pair circling eachother before the male starts jumping up and down and throwing things in the air. If he is successful he will attract a female and they will begin nesting in a few weeks.
References and further readingA First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 180
Birds of the Natal Drakensberg Park - Author: Robin Little and William Bainbridge - Year Published: 1992 - Page: 29
Birds of the South Western Cape - Author: Joy Frandsen - Year Published: - Page: 73
Caravan & Outdoor Life - Issue 632 - Author: - Year Published: 2014 - Page: 48
Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 26
Reader's Digest Illustrated Guide to the Game Parks and Nature Reserves of Southern Africa - 2nd edi - Author: Editor - Alan Duggan - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 409
Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 187
Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 184
Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 152