I was recently lucky enough to visit Kushiro in Southern Hokkaido, Japan, home to the iconic Japanese Red Crested Cranes, or as they're known in Japanese, Tancho Zuru.
They're absolutely beautiful birds, and pretty large too, so if you have a fair telephoto lens, you'll get some nice shots. Here's one I took using a Canon EOS 5D equipped with the Canon 70-300mm DO lens at 300mm f5.6.
Of course being at a top wildlife viewing location in Japan, I was using the smallest and least impressive lens! Check out this for lens envy! Typical kit for each photographer included a Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II with a 600mm f4.0 lens on a tripod for the long shots, and an EOS 5D with a 100-400mm slung round the neck for quick 'snaps'!
If you're interested in photographing the cranes, take a train from Sapporo to Kushiro, then a local bus to one of the two main viewing locations. Tsurimidai is closer and literally across the road from the bus stop, but I'd recommend staying on the bus another few minutes to Yakubamae for the Tancho Zuru sanctuary. It's then about a 10 minute walk to the viewing area, but there were many more birds and that's where all the really serious photographers were.