The months of November-December are when thousands of Common Cranes stop over at the Hula Lake in northern Israel on their migratory path from Europe and Asia (the heart of the breeding population for the species is in Russia) to its wintering sites in northern Africa, the river valleys of Sudan, Ethiopia, Tunisia and Eritrea. The best place to see and photograph them in Israel is the Agamon HaHula reserve and I can take you there. If you are interested in getting photographs you will need a fast SLR camera with a large lens (I’d recommend a zoom that goes up to 500mm).
Check the Agamon Hula page on Facebook for the most recent figures – they counted more than 35,000 cranes at the park on a typical day. The cranes spend the night in the lake (for protection) and at sunrise when they awaken fly off to forage for food. It is an incredible sight to see thousands of cranes take to the sky.
The Common Crane (Grus grus, also known as the Eurasian Crane) is mainly slate-gray, with black on the forehead and lores with a red cap on the top of the head and white stretching from behind the eyes to the upper back.