Sarus Cranes in Intensely Cultivated Floodplains

K.S. Gopi Sundar/ ICF
Sarus Cranes are found mostly in a heavily populated and intensively cultivated landscape.

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Disappearing wetlands, changing agricultural practices and climate change pose enormous threats to the existence of the sarus crane in India. The species has already disappeared in many parts of its former range across south east Asia.

Sarus Cranes (Grus antigone) in north India and other locations occur in landscapes with very high human populations and intensive agriculture. Their successful breeding is dependent on remnant wetland patches. Traditional agricultural practices help them to persist on the otherwise disturbed lands. Alongside the struggle to maintain wetlands amid a burgeoning human population, the changes in rainfall patterns, likely driven by global climate change, are new challenges that cranes here face.

About the author

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Gopi Sundar traverses agricultural landscapes with Sarus Cranes in north India exploring the conservation needs of the plethora of diversity that is retained in intensively farmed areas. He is a Director for the Program SarusScape of the International Crane Foundation.


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