Distribution, densities, and ecology of Siberian cranes in the Khroma River region of northern Yakutia in northeastern Russia

By: , and 
Edited by: David Aborn

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Abstract

The Siberian crane (Grus leucogeranus) is the third rarest crane species in the world with a breeding range now centered on 3 core areas and a buffer zone in the arctic of northern Yakutia in northeastern Russia. During 16 July-2 August 2009, we undertook ground surveys within the Khroma River core breeding area, surrounding buffer zone, and lands lying to the west of the known rbeeding range to estimate densities and determine habitat use and social status of Siberian cranes. A total of 142 Siberian cranes were sighted (including 55 pairs) at 54 locations with 32 cranes (including 13 pairs) sighted outside the currently known breeding range in the lower drainages of the Syalakh and Syuryuktyakh Rivers. After adjusting for a probability of detection of 0.484 (95% CI = 0.281-0.833), Siberian crane densities in the Khroma core area and the buffer zone averaged 0.0921 cranes/km2 and 0.0363 cranes/km2, respectively. A majority of cranes (n = 93 [65%]) occurred in complexes of large basin wetlands, with use centered in those having extensive beds of pendant grass (Arctophila fulva). Of the 142 cranes seen, 110 (77%) were paired, 21 (15%) were singles, and 11 (8%) were in groups of 3-5. The Khroma core supports 1 of 2 large concentrations of breeding Siberian cranes remaining in the wild; therefore, we recommend that consideration be given to designating a nature reserve that would encompass the Khroma core, adjacent buffer zone, and lands to the west (including coastal tundra areas along the lower drainages of the Syalah and Syuryuktyah Rivers). Further research is needed to gain additional insight into Siberian crane distribution and numbers on lands beyond the currently delineated western boundary of the Siberian crane breeding range in the Ust-Yana District of northern Yakutia. Important gaps remain in information needed to effectively guide conservation efforts for the Eastern Population, and recent advances in remote tracking technology offer potential opportunities to help address several key information needs.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Conference Paper
Publication Subtype Conference Paper
Title Distribution, densities, and ecology of Siberian cranes in the Khroma River region of northern Yakutia in northeastern Russia
Volume 12
Year Published 2014
Language English
Publisher North American Crane Working Group
Publisher location Baraboo, WI
Contributing office(s) Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Description 14 p.
Larger Work Type Conference Paper
Larger Work Subtype Conference Paper
Larger Work Title Proceedings of the 12th North American Crane Workshop
First page 51
Last page 64
Conference Title 12th North American Crane Workshop
Conference Location Grand Island, Nebraska
Conference Date 03/13/2011
Country Russia
Other Geospatial Khroma River region
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N