Zhalong Nature Reserve
Situated about 30km (18 miles) outside Qiqhar in the west of Heilongjiang province, Zhalong Nature Reserve is an area of freshwater wetlands. For over 20 years Zhalong has been a conservation area and in early summer it is the breeding area for hundreds of breeds of birds, including storks, white ibis, swans and cranes.
8 of the world’s 15 breeds of crane are found in China and 6 are believed to breed at Zhalong Nature Reserve. They include the siberian white crane, the hooded crane and the red crowned crane. All cranes are popular symbols in the East, partly due to their elegance, long lifespan and because they mate for life. The red crowned crane is also the Chinese symbol of longevity.