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The Blue Crane, known by scientists as Grus paradisea, is a beautiful and amazing animal well worth being South Africa’s national bird.

It is also referred to as the Stanley Crane ,the Paradise Crane and by some taxonomies, Anthropoides paradiseus.

Sadly, because there are only 25 000 birds left in South Africa, Bird Life International classifies the Blue Crane as Vulnerable.

I took this shot one early morning during 2011, outside the Elsenburg Agricultural  Training College, near Stellenbosch. Although they are usually shy creatures I was able to get real close to this beauty!

Johan Botha (2011): Blue Crane Portrait

Johan Botha (2011): Blue Crane Portrait

For more information about these amazing creatures click the following link: Bluecrane.