Although China doesn’t have one actual national bird, the red-crowned crane is often one that is recognized for its importance in Chinese culture.  However, there is a joke you hear often in China about the “construction” crane being the national bird of China! I found references to it all the way back to 1993! It seems that wherever you go… other than true rural areas, you find some kind of construction happening! Shenzhen, the nearby city where we lived for 4 years, had a population of 30,000 in 1980. That year, the government decided to make it a “Special economic zone” and by 2014, the city’s population had grown to over 10 million! The population of the entire metropolitan area was over 18 million! Growth is moving outward, and currently they are working on connecting public transportation routes for the entire Pearl River Delta area. I’m sure the next five years are going to bring dramatic changes to the area we are now in. The top picture shows our view across Songshan Lake (taken today after the rain), and the other shows the growth happening south of us along the lake. The real red-crowned crane is from Safari Park, the Shenzhen Zoo :-)