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Kagu - The Endangered bird

Scientific Classification

Kingdom : Animalia
Phylum : Chordata
Class : Aves
Family : Rhynochetidae
Genus : Rhynochetos
Binomial name : Rhynochetos jubatus

Kagu the long legged blue grayish bird can be found in the dense mountain forest of New Caledonia. This is only member of the family Rhynochetidae that is surviving today. Kagu are flightless birds that build their nest in the ground with the help of sticks and lay only one egg. The pale color of the bird has given the name "The ghost of the forest" by the local people. At the back of the head a prominent crest of feathers can be seen. The legs and bills of the Kagu are orange in color.

Kagu are absolute carnivores. They feed on many animals that include snails, lizards and worms being the major part of diet. They also prey on larvae, spiders, centipedes, and insects. They will hunt the small animals in the shallow water. To catch the prey in the water kagu will stand motionless in the ground or from an elevated perch and silently watch the prey's moving. Sometimes they stand on one foot and move the leaf litter with the other foot in order to catch the attention of the prey.

Kagu are now said to be endangered birds. Their initial decline was due to hunting and capturing them as pets. Loss of habitat is also the other main reason for them to become extinct. Now they are fully protected in New Caledonia.

 
   

Whooping Crane - The Endangered bird

Scientific Classification

Kingdom : Animalia
Phylum : Chordata
Class : Aves
Order : Gruiformes
Family : Gruidae
Genus : Grus
Binomial name : Grus Americana

Whooping Crane the tallest North American bird is noted for its whooping sound and call is now said to be an endangered bird. Whooping crane along with the Sandhill crane are the only two crane species that are found in North America. The lifespan of the whooping crane is said to be 22 to 24 years.

Adult whooping cranes have red crown and they are white in color. They also have long, dark, and pointed bill. The younger ones are pale brown in color. Their legs are long and are dark in color. During the flight the black wing tips of the adult whooping cranes are visible.

When the adult crane stands it measures about 1.5 m and they weigh about 7.5 kg. Whooping crane has a wing span of about 2.5 m wide. The average flight speed of the whooping crane is 45 km/h.

Whooping cranes feed on snails, larval insects, leeches, frogs, minnows, small rodents and berries. They also feed on dead ducks and marsh birds.

In 1995 there were only 149 whooping cranes and with the conservation efforts now there are about 320 whooping cranes in the world.

 

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