Thirty-six lawmakers have proposed that the red-crested crane should be designated as the national bird.
He Xiaochun, a deputy to the National People's Congress, China's top legislature, said that she took the lead in making the proposal, which had won approval of many other deputies.
He, the chairwoman of the People's Congress of Qiqihar City, Heilongjiang Province, said that the red-crested crane is considered the sign of good luck, dignity and a long life.
The world has some 1,300 red-crested cranes, 1,000 of which live in China. China, Japan, Russia, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the Republic of Korea are their main habitats.
She said, “Another reason why I have made the proposal is that the Zalong Wetland Nature Reserve in Qiqihar is a major habitat for red-crested cranes. The designation of the crane as the national bird will certainly draw attention of the whole society to the protection of this endangered species.”
She noted that China should promptly designate its national bird because many other countries have designated national birds as an expression of the degree of their civilization.
(Xinhua News Agency March 13, 2002)