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See them for real

See them for real

Follow this link to find out where the cranes have been seen lately and how you can see them too!
Follow the progress

Follow the progress

Follow the ups and downs of the project as it unfolds by reading the staff blogs
Meet the cranes of 2014

Meet the cranes of 2014

Meet the cranes
Discover the Crane Landscape

Discover the Crane Landscape

Find out where the cranes are going to live and see what other wildlife you can find hidden in the landscape
Where are we now?

Where are we now?

Find out the facts and figures of the project so far...
Watch the film

Watch the film

Watch the 30 minute ‘Return of the Cranes’ film all about the project
Learn about the project

Learn about the project

Find out the aims of this historic Project on ‘The Project pages’
Discover the Process

Discover the Process

For a step-by step guide from egg to adult - visit ‘The Process’ pages
See them for real
Follow the progress
Meet the cranes of 2014
Discover the Crane Landscape
Where are we now?
Watch the film
Learn more about the Project
Learn about the process

A wetland icon returns to Southwest England.

Between 2010 and 2015, 93 common cranes were  hand-reared to release onto the Somerset Levels and Moors - doubling the UK population, and helping to secure the future of the crane in the UK. 

crane in the mist
A crane in the morning mist. Credit - RSPB images
The initial 6 year phase of The Great Crane Project is complete - with eggs collected annually in Germany from 2010 - 2014, transported to the UK for hatching and rearing, and subsequent release in Somerset. 

Cranes are beautiful birds. Their trumpeting calls sound astonishing - 
and they have a courtship dance that has to be seen to be believed.

Before hunting and the draining of our wetlands wiped them out, cranes were plentiful and widespread in the UK. 

Cranes made a natural return to the UK in the late 1970's with the first fledged chick for 400yrs being produced in the Norfolk Broads in 1982. With a lot of conservation effort the population has grown and spread over the last 30 years with small numbers of cranes now also regulalry breeding in Cambridgshire, Suffolk, Yorkshire and North East Scotland.  

The Great Crane Project will continue to monitor and protect the released birds, and ensure suitable habitat is maintained and created to help re-establish former numbers in wetlands throughout the UK.  

Explore this site, watch Return of the Cranes a short film, Meet the Cranes, view the Crane Sightings Map and if you've seen the cranes in the wild, you can find out more on how to submit your sighting.


Keep up to date with the Latest News providing regular updates
from the project team on the progress so far.

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