Every year, in the month of December, the Japan Dreamscapes (JDS) tour leaders depart for an essential tour, the Hokkaido Birding Photo Tour. Every part of Hokkaido is picturesque in the winter time, but there is always one all-star that stands out, and is actually present all year long but often sought after in the winter, the red-crowned crane.
Commonly found in the Kushiro Wetlands of Hokkaido, the red-crowned crane looks all the more majestic during winter because its brilliant white plumage, blends in some seamlessly with the snow-covered surroundings on a Hokkaido Photo Tour. Their broad wing spans are truly something to behold, and photographers will plan their entire days around capturing photos of them as part of their photography workshops.
It is truly magnificent to see the cranes strike their unique poses and record them in film. One can only wonder what hidden meanings are being communicated among the flocks of red-crowned cranes as the prance about the wetlands and participate in their social displays, seeming almost for the sake of the photographers in attendance.
Some of the JDS photo tour leaders are of the opinion that the most spectacular moment is when the dancing has ended and the cranes take flight, not at the moment they leave the ground, although that is a vital part of their flight, it’s the moment when the cranes fully extend their wings and showcase the sometimes more than 2 meter reach of their wingspan as they stretch themselves out and begin their voyage to their next destination. The Hokkaido Birding Tours are truly spectacles to behold.