Habitat use, preference and utilization distribution of two crane species (Genus: Grus) in Huize National Nature Reserve, Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, China
Understanding habitat use and spatial distribution of wildlife could help conservationists determine high-priority areas and enhance conservation efforts. In this study, we studied habitat use, preference and utilization distribution of two Gruidae species (Black-necked Cranes Grus nigricollis and Eurasian Cranes G. grus) in Huize National Natural Reserve, Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, SW China. Line transect method indicated that the anthropogenic habitat of farmland was utilized the most by these
... o species (>90% of flocks observed for both). But Black-necked Cranes preferred marsh to farmland and grassland while Eurasian Cranes favored grassland in our study. Nearly all the Black-necked Cranes (99.30% of the flocks observed) utilized habitats in the core area of the reserve, covering an area of 283.84 ha close to the common roost. Eurasian Cranes were mostly (55.39% of the flocks observed) distributed in the buffer zone with higher elevation and further distance to the roost, covering an area of 558.73 ha. We believe that our findings could help guide habitat management, functional zoning planning and adjustment in the future. According to our results, we recommended restoration of more wetlands, retain large areas of farmland, and protect the areas that cranes use most frequently.