©Wolfgang Kaehler

Japan Day Three

A pensive cloud rests above the sleeping Japanese cranes, awaiting dawn.  The trees bow, meditating in the stillness of winter.  Safe and warm in their river dormitory, the dreaming cranes rest, their heads tucked beneath their feathers.  Slowly they awake, stretching their necks and wings.  Stepping through the water.  Scanning for fish.  The silence crumbles as their calls build to a crescendo.


All photos © Wolfgang Kaehler, phototours.us

The cranes peck at corn in a field at a nature center.  It is this food that saves them in the desert of winter.  Although it is not yet the breeding time–that will come in February–they occasionally spring into the air and fan their wings, attempting to impress a mate.  But another grand spectacle is the simple art of flight.  The cranes unfold their wings, fringed with black feathers, and with the utmost grace, soar off to another field or back to the river for nightfall.


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