Saturday, 18 January 2014



After the successful experience of last winter 2012/2013 (see link) the Extremaduran crane enthusiasts have started a new census programme for the 2013/2014 season. Indeed, this time round, they have succeeded in promoting a national crane census, which took place in December 2013, the results of which have not yet been fully compiled. As a starter, we can provide briefly the figures for Extremadura. The second regional census results from 23-27 January are still pending, which will give us an overall more complete picture. Once the data are ready, we will publish a more detailed posting about the wintering crane population in Extremadura in 2013/2014.

Each cenus brings new record figures for this species. The final result for December 2013 was 128, 820 cranes counted, 29,515 in the provincia de Cáceres-Tajo basin, 82,532 in the Central Zone (see link) and 16,773 in the rest of Badajoz province. It is worth noting that within the Cáceres province census figures there are three roosts with about 7,500 birds that lie inside the territory of Toledo. In the national survey results, they will be treated as such, but given that these counts are undertaken in a coordinated way by observers from Cáceres, at the regional scale they are considered as part of the Extremadura total (as has been the case previously). Indeed, cranes have no borders. Compared with the previous census of December 2012, using the same methodology and similar effort, the result is 29,000 more cranes. In the Tajo basin of Cáceres the population has risen by 8,000 birds, despite the Brozas sector (with 1,500 more cranes) only getting partially surveyed, in the Central Zone there were some 20,000 more, and in Badajoz province about a thousand more cranes.