Coming home to roost
The offer was coursed through Dr. Juan Carlos Gonzales, an ornithologist and Director of the University of the Philippines-Los Banos Museum of Natural History, during his visit on Thursday, a week before the town’s anniversary this week. The Luzon Sarus Crane belongs to the sarus crane (Antigone antigone), a large non-migratory crane found in parts of the Indan Subcontinent, Southeast Asia and Australia. The tallest of the flying birds, standing at a height of up to 1.8m (5ft 11in), they are conspicuous and iconic species of open wetlands and forage on marshes and shallow wetlands for roots, tubers, insects, crustaceans and small vertebrate prey. Gonzales, who teaches wildlife and zoology at UPLB, and his team were in Cagayan to personally check on the migratory birds, particularly along the Laguna De Cagayan lake in Sitio Bangalao of Barangay Luga here. “An unnamed ornithologist in Australia has been looking for a wetland community in the Philippines in the last three years to adopt the hatch (sic) chicks and return them where it (sic) once belong,” Gonzales was quoted saying. Abe Almirol Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer Nida dela Cruz said Gonzales claimed the bird was endemic to Cagayan. According to experts, the bird lays two to three eggs which weight 240 grams per egg and incubated by the pairs for 35 days.
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