Tancho Crane – Sister Cities Kushiro & Burnaby

“Burnaby was one of the first communities in Canada to recognize the economic and cultural opportunities of “friendships” with Asian cities and has supported a very active sister city relationship with Kushiro, Japan since 1965.” City of Burnaby

In 2005, The City of Burnaby celebrated the 40th anniversary of its Exchange Affiliation agreement with Kushiro in 2015, by installing a eco-sculpture of two Tancho Cranes.

“The Japanese name of the species (Tancho) is derived from the red crown (tan = red & cho = crown). Indigenous people of Hokkaido, the Aynu, think that spirits inhabited in all creatures. They called the red-crowned crane ‘saruronkamui’ which means the ‘god of wetland’.” Wild Bird Society of Japan

Kushiro is recognized for its preservation of the Kushiro Marsh Wetland and saving the Tancho crane from extinction. Tancho Cranes are only found in Hokkaido. Once thought to be extinct, small numbers were rediscovered in 1924 residing in the Kushiro Wetland.

According to the Government of British Columbia, The Sandhill Crane, once abundant, has “declined across North America due to habitat loss, disturbance and unregulated hunting. It is not known whether British Columbia’s present breeding population is increasing or decreasing, but it is clear that breeding populations in the Southern Interior and in the Fraser Valley were decimated in the last century.”

Thank you for joining me on Burnaby Mountain to celebrate the many men and women who work tirelessly to save these remarkable winged creatures.

As Wendell Berry reminds us, “The care of the Earth is our most ancient and most worthy, and after all our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it and to foster its renewal is our only hope.”

68 Comments Add yours

  1. LA Scott says:

    Stunning little video and those crane sculptures are amazingly beautiful. Thank you for enlightening my world a little more.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I am so glad that you joined me on Burnaby Mountain. Happy New Year – so glad that we are connected.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. cindy knoke says:

    Such a beautiful and transcendent video Rebecca. Can you imagine getting pleasure from shooting sand hill cranes? Unless you are starving, you can’t eat them. No wonder they are skittish around people.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Thank you, Cindy for your heartwarming comments. Your blog is a testament to the need to protect our wildlife. I believe that you are a bird whisperer. Hugs and more hugs.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. elisabethm says:

    Thank you for this beautiful post! I would have loved to see the cranes when I visited Hokkaido, but we were there only a few days. And they probably prefer living in peace and quiet anyway;-)

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      What an amazing video, Elisabeth: https://youtu.be/f-vGpEotSVY Thank you so much for adding the link to your comment. I am adding it on my response in case it didn’t come through with yours. You have prompted me to think about how travel will change going forward, especially when it comes to protecting wildlife. Your comment “prefer living in peace and quiet” is insightful. Sometimes in our desire to connect with nature, we diminish their environment by our presence. I believe that virtual travel (via videos such as the one you shared) will become the best way to view a endangered species and habitat. Many thanks!

      Liked by 3 people

      1. elisabethm says:

        Wise words, Rebecca. The desire to connect with nature is very strong, but we also need to respect the habitat of endangered species. Luckily companies like the BBC make stunning videos; we could never see them so spectacularly in real life.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Thank you for postingthe video, Elisabeth. I was hoping to see what the birds look like. Aren’t they beautiful creatures!

      Liked by 3 people

      1. elisabethm says:

        They certainly are; it’s not surprising that they became such a mythical part of Japanese culture!

        Liked by 2 people

  4. Liz says:

    Gentle cranes and beautiful piano music – what a lovely way to start my day, thank you! X

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I’m so glad that we started the day together. It may not have been the exact time, but to me is was the same time. Hugs and more hugs!

      Liked by 2 people

    2. And what a lovely way to end mine!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Thank you for bringing beauty to my day with this wonderful tour. Many hugs and wishes for a beautiful week ahead! 🤗

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I am so glad that you came over to my side of the world, Marina. Looking forward to heading over to your side in a few minutes. We travel the world in seconds from our kitchen tables. Hugs!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. We certainly do and I am ever grateful for being able to travel to your wondrous places! Many hugs!!!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. A lovely post. Always nice to read about sister cities that span the planet.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Did you know that Vancouver and Edinburgh are sister cities since 1977. Whenever I land in Scotland I feel like I’m coming home! A few steps away from this location is where the Simon Fraser University Pipe Bank practices for the Worlds Championship in Glasgow. Do you hear the bagpipes through the WIFI?!!!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. LOl…. No wonder you feel an affinity. But it is more than that. In your soul you are a clanswoman xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Klausbernd says:

    Dear Rebecca,
    thank you very much for your interesting post, especially interesting for us here as the Cley Marshes are part of the international wetland network. We have the Simon Aspinall Wildlife Education Centre here in Cley. Simon Aspinall was one of the activists for building an international wetland network.
    With lots of love and big hugs from the stormy sea
    The Fab Four of Cley
    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Clanmother says:

      Dear Klausbernd, I was thinking of Hanne taking photos on Blakeney National Nature Reserve when I was creating this post. Her work to preserve this precious wetlands is truly inspiring. I am looking forward to celebrating International Wetlands Day on February 2. I looked back in my posts and found one where we connected in the celebration in 2019 https://ladybudd.com/2019/02/02/celebrating-international-wetlands-day/. Sending much love and many hugs to my dear friends, the Fab Four of Cley.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Klausbernd says:

        Dear Rebecca,
        I just told Hanne about your idea to do something about the wetland of Blakeney National Reserve. She is just busy and will think about it and will come back to you later. She has so many other projects. Actually Blakeney National Reserve is not such a typical wetland as Cley Reserve is.
        With love and hugs from the little village next to the big sea
        Klausbernd 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Clanmother says:

        Hanne is doing marvelous work, Klausbernd. Her enthusiasm and expressive photography compels us to hear the voice of nature and find our way back to a sense of belonging that comes from merging into a wider narrative. I did not know the difference between the Cley Reserve and Blakeney National Reserve. I just found the link for the Cley Reserve which includes a great map of the area. https://www.norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk/wildlife-in-norfolk/nature-reserves/reserves/cley-and-salthouse-marshes. Thank you, Klausbernd and Hanne for your generous support of TTT. Much love and many hugs heading back to my dear friends, The Fab Four of Cley.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Klausbernd says:

        Dear Rebecca,
        even a lot of people here don’t know that difference. It’s actually one area seen it from the geographical point of view but two organasitions that manage and own this coastal area, the Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT, the oldest wildlife trust in England) and the National Trust. The NWT is very active concerning wetlands and cares for the wetlands of the Cley and Salthouse Marshes. These marshes are part of Ramsar, the international network of wetlands. Simon Aspinall, living just on the other side of our lane, was very active to establish Ramsar.
        Have an easy day
        Klausbernd 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      4. Clanmother says:

        I just went on the Ramsar website and found that the convention entered into force in Canada on 15 May 1981. Canada currently has 39 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Sites), with a surface area of 13,092,784 hectares. The nearest one to me is The Fraser River Delta!!! Exciting!!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. lampmagician says:

    Beautiful and informative as always, dear Rebecca. Just fascinating 🥰🤗💖🙏

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Thank you so much my dear friend for your support and encouragement. I am delighted that we connected in 2020. I am delighted that you enjoyed meeting up on Burnaby Mountain.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Annika Perry says:

    Rebecca, what a wonderful eco-sculpture and one can sense the spirit of these Tancho Cranes! They are astounding and what creative skill and care to look after them.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I love how you wrote “one can sense the sprit of these Tancho Cranes.” That is exactly how I felt when I was taking the photos, which were taken in September. I want to visit them in the winter months and see how they progress into spring and summer. Happy New Year!!! Hugs!

      Liked by 3 people

  10. These eco-sculptures are so magnificent. I hope the Sandhill Cranes will be safe from extinction for all time. They are truly gorgeous. I love the Wendell Berry quote. Wishing you a wonder-filled week, dear Rebecca. xxx

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Wendell Berry has wonderful way of exploring life. When I was at a major decision point several years ago a friend sent me this quote, which was my first introduction to Wendell Berry.

      “It may be that when we no longer know what to do,
      we have come to our real work
      and when we no longer know which way to go,
      we have begun our real journey.
      The mind that is not baffled is not employed.
      The impeded stream is the one that sings.”

      Liked by 4 people

      1. What a wonderful quote to ponder, Rebecca. It’s good to know that feeling baffled can be considered a good thing. 😀

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Clanmother says:

        🤗🤗🤗

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Clanmother says:

      P.S I was thinking of Lenny Limpkin when I was researching the Tancho and Sandhill Cranes. Is Lenny a crane?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha…….dear Lenny was in our backyard yesterday, conversing with half a dozen white ibis and a couple of mottled ducks. Yes, I think you’re right in thinking that Lenny is related to the crane family.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Clanmother says:

        He is so handsome!!!

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Meg says:

    This is a fine example of sister cities and how these two places have supported each other over the years. The eco-sculpture is lovely!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I just looked up sister cities and was amazed by the huge number of connections between cities around the world. It is a great thought to enter a fresh new year. So glad you enjoyed the eco-sculpture.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. Dave Astor says:

    These “eco-sculptures” are graceful and beautiful, and I love the idea of “sister cities” — especially in this divided world of ours. Wonderful presentation, as always, Rebecca.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Your comments always spark a question, which has me scurrying over the net to find an answer. Who created the concept of Sister Cities? Currently the City of Vancouver has five sister-city relationships with:

      Odessa, Ukraine
      Yokohama, Japan
      Edinburgh, Scotland
      Guangzhou, China
      Los Angeles, United States

      How did this all come about. Well, I found the answer on this website: https://sistercities.org/
      “Sister Cities International was created at President Eisenhower’s 1956 White House conference on citizen diplomacy. Eisenhower envisioned an organization that could be the hub of peace and prosperity by creating bonds between people from different cities around the world. By forming these relationships, President Eisenhower reasoned that people of different cultures could celebrate and appreciate their differences and build partnerships that would lessen the chance of new conflicts.”

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Dave Astor says:

        I didn’t know that the sister cities concept started during the Eisenhower administration. Thank you, Rebecca! Eisenhower was certainly a different kind of Republican than many current politicians in that party. And I’m very impressed with Vancouver’s five sister-city relationships!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Clanmother says:

        Until today and your comments, I did not think of looking up the origins of sister cities. By the way, I’m very impressed with Montclair’s sister cities. Check out this link!!! https://www.montclairnjusa.org/visitors/about_montclair/montclair_s_sister_cities. I understand that the connection to Graz, Austria began shortly after WWII. I continue to learn.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Dave Astor says:

        Thanks, Rebecca, for posting that Montclair link! Nice that my town also has sister cities. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Clanmother says:

        This year, I am going to travel in my own city. I can’t believe how little I know about what is just outside my front door. Thank you for sparking this mini-research project.

        Liked by 2 people

      5. How progressive of Ike!

        Liked by 3 people

  13. Jean-Jacques says:

    Beautiful, and an enviable part of Canada !

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      This is just a few steps away from Simon Fraser University, which as you know sits on the top of Burnaby Mountain. There are plans for a gondola because it is very difficult for buses carrying students heading for classes to climb the mountain during the winter.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Rebecca, this is delightful. I love topiaries. What could be more whimsical? Although I can’t imagine having the skill to get them to grow. I never did have a green thumb.
    Hugs on the wing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Clanmother says:

      You and me, both, Teagan. Although I continue to speak to trees and flowers. And I have a feeling that I am beginning to understand their language, which is different levels of silence. Perhaps it is all about sensations. I read a book by Peter Wohlleben, a German forester and author, who has a rare understanding of the inner life of trees. Although he ideas are controversial, his knowledge and experience certainty provide gravitas. Sending back hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Paul Andruss says:

    Lovely post Rebecca, the Cranes are beautiful. capture the spirit of thses haunting creatures perfectly

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Thank you, Paul. I can understand how mythologies arise from these majestic birds. I especially appreciated that the Aynu named the red-crowned crane ‘saruronkamui’ which means the ‘god of wetland.” There is a mystical quality in their dance and bearing.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Paul Andruss says:

        Absolutely Rebecca

        Liked by 1 person

  16. Thank you for this video, Rebecca! I got so much pleasure from watching it!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Thank you, Liz, for your heartwarming comment. Burnaby Mountain has a marvelous view of Vancouver. On a clear day, I can see ocean. You would be interested in knowing that Simon Fraser University is only a few steps away from this place. SFU has strong ties to the indigenous community. “Within the province we know as British Columbia, there are 198 First Nations, and 30 languages, with 60 dialects spoken. These numbers don’t include the many First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Peoples whose home territories fall outside the province’s borders. In other words, SFU is located on the unceded, shared, current, and traditional territories of multiple Nations.” Check out these two links: https://www.lib.sfu.ca/help/academic-integrity/indigenous-initiatives/traditional-territory
      https://www.sfu.ca/students/indigenous/about.html

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you for sharing the links, Rebecca. I just checked them out. The idea of land acknowledgement really appeals to me.

        Liked by 2 people

  17. Ms Frances says:

    Thank you for this interesting post, it is really very special. I waited to comment until now because I wanted to enjoy reading again. And may I add, I also enjoyed reading all the comments that followed! ! I remember hearing about this sister relationship some years ago and I am happy to be reminded again! I also did not know that there are other “sister cities”, but I think that this relationship is by far the oldest. The photos of the two birds are lovely and amazing. I would like to know how they are kept so lovely and vibrant over such a long time. This is a very special coverage of a beautiful and historic place!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      I am delighted that you remembered that Burnaby had a sister city. I just found out about this past September when I visited Burnaby Mountain. There are so many stories that are just outside our doorstep. So this year, I will be a tourist in our town. I was thinking of visiting the cranes during different seasons – stay tuned. Happy New Year!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Ms Frances says:

        💕🌹⚘⚘🥀🥀🌷💕

        Liked by 2 people

  18. Mary Jo Malo says:

    Eco-sculptures are such a labor of love, and that theme ties both the cities and the cranes together. It seems like the ‘sister’ cranes both like jaunty little red hats 🙂 Just think, birds dancing and singing for the sheer joy of it. The video Elisabeth contributes here is further evidence, for me anyway, that humans and animals are often in wonderful symbiosis. We provide for one another. Hugs +Hugs!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      How very well said, Mary Jo – “We provide for one another!!!” Elisabeth’s video was heartening. I have been dancing ever since I watched it. Can you imagine what it would be like to be amongst them. I have goosebumps just thinking about that thought! You have a great new equation: H + H = L.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mary Jo Malo says:

        No that’s some math I can wrap my head around 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Clanmother says:

        🤗🤗🤗

        Liked by 1 person

  19. J.D. says:

    Such lovely sculptures, and what a tribute to these graceful creatures.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Burnaby Mountain has a mystical quality for me. I can see the ocean on one side and the mountains on the other. Simon Fraser University is only a few steps away from this area, which has cultural significance:

      “Looking north from Burnaby Mountain Park. The near shoreline is known to the Squamish as Lhuḵw’lhuḵw’áyten. Arbutus or lhulhuḵw’ay (always peeling tree)
      Lhuḵw’lhuḵw’áyten, “‘where the bark gets pe[e]led’ in spring” is the Skwxwu7mesh (Squamish) place name for the area that was formerly Barnet Mill, and today is known as Barnet Marine Park. It is at the base of Burnaby Mountain, home of Simon Fraser University. In modern usage this name is often used to refer to all of Burnaby Mountain. The name Lhuḵw’lhuḵw’áyten, derives from the Skwxwu7mesh word for arbutus, lhulhuḵw’ay, which comes from lhuḵw’ (peel), and means “always peeling tree.” For generations, Skwxwu7mesh people have seasonally harvested this tree’s bark, using it for different cultural purposes. It provides important medicine. It can be made into a ‘tea’, which is used as an eyewash, and the leaves can be chewed to treat colds and tuberculosis.” https://www.sfu.ca/brc/imeshMobileApp/place-names/lhukwlhukwayten.html

      Liked by 2 people

  20. Amit Kumar says:

    Hello,
    Nice Post [ specially video ].
    Thank You…

    Happy New Year to you 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Thank you so much for your visit and comment, Amit! Happy New Year! All the very best wishes for 2021.

      Liked by 2 people

  21. Resa says:

    So cool! Fab video.
    I lived in Burnaby for almost a year. We lived across from a beautiful park.
    People in Vancouver were always concerned about environment. I attended the first Green Peace “Save the Whales” rally. I still have the button!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Clanmother says:

      Oh my goodness – you were there when history was made. I looked up the dates and found this on the Greenpeace Website: “On April 27, 1975, Greenpeace launched the world’s first anti-whaling campaign from the docks of Vancouver. The mission would become the spark that ignited a global “Save the Whales” movement and eventually helped secure an international ban on commercial whaling.” What an exciting moment to witness. Keep the button!!!! Over the past few decades, Vancouver City planners have been proactive is creating green spaces within walking distance. It really makes a different is quality of life, especially in these past months. Thanks for much for stopping by! Sending hugs and more hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

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