Drakensberg Crane Project

The Southern Drakensberg is one of the few places in South Africa where one can see all three of South Africa’s crane species in one day and is the stronghold for South Africa’s endangered Grey Crowned Cranes.

The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) have been working intensively in the area since 2012. Much of the work has been focussed on conserving crane habitat and to date the EWT in partnership with landowners and the provincial agencies, have secured almost 20 000 ha of habitat through the declaration of Nature Reserves and Protected Environments in the area – thus creating safe space for cranes to thrive.

Some of the conservation in action includes the colour ringing of cranes in order to monitor uniquely marked birds over time to understand survival, movement and breeding biology and also to work with farmers on managing habitat for cranes and minimising threats because together we can and have made a difference.

In order to understand how well cranes are doing – considering all three species are threatened, the EWT and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife conduct annual aerial counts of cranes to verify that our conservation efforts have an impact.

We are pleased to see increases in all three of our crane populations in the Drakensberg, your support means that we can intensify our efforts and ensure that Grey Crowned , Blue and Wattled Cranes grace the Southern Drakensberg skies for ever.