Species in news: Common crane

  • IASbaba
  • May 17, 2021
  • 0
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Species in news: Common crane

Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Environment

In news

  • Common crane was recently spotted in Ireland. 
  • It had disappeared more than three centuries ago from Ireland.
  • The bird is part of its folklore and was a popular pet during medieval times, 

Key takeaways

  • A pair of cranes was spotted last year on a restored peat bog 
  • Peat bog is a type of wetland that is mostly found in northern latitude countries. 
  • The birds are in Ireland’s Midlands region, but their exact location has been kept secret to protect them.
  • Cranes stand at 4 feet tall with a wingspan of over 7 feet, and used to be the largest birds in Ireland. 
  • Although they were once common, the destruction of their habitat caused them to disappear around the 16th and 17th century.

Important value additions 

Why is bog restoration important

  • Bogs (also called quagmires) are soft, spongy wetlands that accumulate peat. 
  • Peat is a fossil fuel that is used for heating homes and businesses in northern Europe.
  • They are formed in northern climates, and take thousands of years to develop.
  • Bogs also act as carbon sinks, sequestering around 200 million tons of carbon from the environment in Siberia and Scandinavia.
  • For centuries, however, bogs have been drained for extracting peat or for development, leading to the destruction of their delicate ecosystems, including damage to species such as cranes that breed here.

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