Grus communis, Bechst.
865. :- 67. cinerea Bechts. :- Jerdon's Birds of India, Vol. II, p. 664 ; Butler, Guzerat; Stray Feathers, Vol. IV, p. 15 ; Deccan, Stray Feathers, Vol. IX, p. 427; Murray's Vertebrate Zoology of Sind, p. 237; Game Birds of India, Vol. III, p. 21.
THE COMMON CRANE.
Kullum or Kulang, Hin. Length, 43 to 48 ; expanse, 79 to 91; wing, 20.5 to 24 ; tail, 7.0 to 9.12 ; tarsus, 8.25 to 9.9 ; bill from gape, 4.3 to 4.8; weight, 9 5/16 to 13 lbs.
Bill dingy horny-green, yellowish at tip; irides deep reddish or dingy-orange ; legs and feet black.
Forehead and cheeks nude, with black bristly hairs; crown nude, dull orange-red ; occiput, throat, and fore part of the neck, of a deep blackish-grey ; between the eyes, sides of the head and upper part of the neck, white; as is the greater part of the back of the neck, but the color impure and with a reddish. tinge. All the upper part of the body and the lower plumage dark ashy-blue ; quills and greater-coverts dull black; secondaries and tertiaries grey, black tipped, the latter narrowing to a point with the barbs of the uppermost feathers disunited, and all arching down and forming an elegant tuft of floating plumes, which it is able to erect at pleasure.
The Common Crane occurs abundantly in suitable localities, (wherever there are large tanks) throughout the region, but only during the cold season. The Kulung or Kullum is one of the finest game birds in India, as it is one of the wariest. It is almost impossible to stalk them while feeding, as they leave some of their number as sentinels, and on the slightest symptom of danger they give the alarm, and the whole flock rises, and is soon out of danger.