- Breeding season May-Aug~ mate for life
- Clutch Size 1-2
- Incubation period 30 days
- 3-4 feet tall, 9-12 pounds
- not for inexperienced or beginning bird enthusiasts.
Stanley Cranes, also known as Blue Cranes or Paradise Cranes, are the national bird of South Africa, which is where they are primarily found. Stanley Cranes are rare in the world and even rarer in the United States. With their blue-white graceful coloring, stream-lined bodies, and long trailing dark wing feathers, these birds are truly an elegant and extravagant bird to raise.
Males and females are almost indistinguishable. They are both mostly a silvery bluish-white color. Their heads are clean and have bare skin, with very dense feathers that can be raised creating a variety of angles to the face and head to display emotion. They have longer, darker feathers on the lower neck and chest, but the most alluring part of their appearance are the long trailing dark bluish-black feathers that descend from the undersides of the wings (tertial feathers) almost to the ground. Their black legs complement the look beautifully.
The Stanley Crane has a very limited range, 99% of the entire population is in the country of South Africa, with a few smaller populations, only about 60 individuals, scattered in the neighboring country of Namibia. Stanley Cranes thrive in dry grassy uplands, pastures, and plains with scattered trees. During nesting season, they look for areas with both access to wetlands and upland pasture. They mostly feed on land. They practice altitudinal migration, which means that instead of migrating long distances, they migrate to lower altitudes where it is warmer, during the cold season.
Housing Requirements: Cranes are large birds with a high activity level, and they need a large enclosure or aviary. At least 200 square feet of well-protected aviary space per bird is required. Some sort of additional indoor, heated winter shelter will be needed for colder months in most northern areas of the US. Cranes are vulnerable to predators when kept in an enclosure, so be very certain that your space is secure even against small predators like weasel and mink.
Diet: In the wild, Stanley Cranes eat an omnivorous diet consisting of seeds and plants, insects, and small animals. Commercial Crane Diet would be recommended for general feeding, but supplementing your birds with greens and vegetables, peanuts, mealworms, fruit, and small fish would be a great way to add variety and diversity to their diet.