The KZN Crane Foundation was established in 1989 in response to the dramatic decline in KwaZulu-Natal’s crane populations. Its founding was sponsored by the Wildlife and Environmental Society of South Africa (WESSA) and the S.A. Ornithological Society (now Birdlife S.A.) and it enjoyed the support of the International Crane Foundation and the then Natal Parks Board (now Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife).
Why Conserve Cranes?
Cranes are the ambassadors for two of South Africa’s most important ecosystems, the wetlands and grasslands that make up our water catchment areas. All South African residents are dependent upon the careful management of these biodiversity hot spots as are South Africa’s cranes. These ecosystems provide food, clothing, bio-diversity, carbon storage, housing materials, water storage and purification, flood control, recharge of groundwater supplies, and recreational and tourism opportunities. Efforts to protect cranes bring the need to conserve these ecosystems into sharp focus and the cranes reliance on these ecosystems is a reflection of our own survival needs.