Four black-necked cranes, all adults, arrived in Phobjikha, Wangduephodrang, as of Tuesday.
Phobjikha is one of the winter habitats for the cranes and the first pair arrived at 10:30am of November 2.
An official with the Royal Society for Protection of Nature (RSPN), Santa Gajmer, said that around 500 cranes are expected to arrive in the following months in the Gangtey-Phobji site.
The site is a winter roosting and feeding ground to the largest group of the endangered birds every year.
Last year, a total of 458 cranes arrived in Phobjikha, a drop by 46 from 504 in 2017.
Santa Gajmer said that while the population of the endangered birds is increasing globally, the number of cranes flying in fluctuates every winter.
Another habitat, Bumdeling, received its first pair of cranes at around 3:30 pm on November 5. Officials are expecting more than 100 cranes to arrive by February next year.
A total of 119 cranes arrived last year.
Limited number of feeding grounds (paddy fields), disturbance at the feeding grounds and the increasing number of stray dogs in the area attributed to the decreased number of the cranes in Bumdeling.
According to the annual RSPN report 2019, the conservation and management of foraging habitats can be enhanced only by understanding the dietary composition of the cranes that is not much known in the country today.
Data maintained by the RSPN recorded 609 individuals that have migrated in Bhutan from October last year until March this year. One crane was sighted in Haa last year.
Meanwhile, with Gangtey and Phobji gewogs hosting the crane festival soon, the understanding on the importance of the species conservation is expected to improve among the members in the community.