Red-crowned Crane Grus japonensis

Family: Gruidae (Cranes)

Authority: (Müller, 1776)

Red List Category

Criteria: A2ac+4ac; C1

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Justification of Red List category
This species is classified as Vulnerable because the species suffered a rapid population reduction within the past three generations. While the island population in Japan has grown rapidly in recent decades into a large and now stable proportion of the global population, the continental Asian population has declined rapidly. Overall the species remains at high risk of extinction due to multiple threats affecting the small and still declining continental population and to the dependence of the population in Japan on active conservation. The overall current and future rate of population reduction has slowed as the stable Japanese population has increased as a proportion of the global population, such that future rates of reduction are suspected to slow further. However the overall population size remains small even with this population close to a predicted maximum size and, with the long generation length of the species, indications of population reductions impacting the global population size would require the swift reassessment of the species.

In order to prevent the extinction of the continental population coordinated action is necessary to ensure the continued and increased availability of extensive wetlands in which the species is protected from disturbance. Currently, the population wintering in China is very close to extinction, and that wintering in the Korean peninsula restricted to increasingly small patches of suitable habitat. The genetic distinction of the continental and island populations mean that preventing the regional extinction of the former is a priority for the long-term persistence of the species. Further loss and degradation of suitable wetlands through conversion to agriculture and industrial development must be avoided.

Population size: 2000-2650,2300 mature individuals

Population trend: decreasing

Extent of occurrence (breeding/resident): 2,110,000 km2

Country endemic: no

Land-mass type - continent
Land-mass type - shelf island
Realm - Palearctic
IUCN Ecosystem -- Freshwater biome
IUCN Ecosystem -- Terrestrial biome
IUCN Ecosystem -- Marine biome

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Grus japonensis. Downloaded from on 11/12/2023.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 11/12/2023.