Saturday, 2 November 2013

129. White Stork (Ciconia ciconia)

White Storks are very familiar birds in many parts of southern and central Europe, as they like to nest on raised platforms handily provided by house roofs and chimneys, telegraph poles and church towers. They are migratory and spend their winters in Africa. They breed in open farmland with nearby marshy/flooded areas for foraging, and they have some nice courtship behaviour, which involves the male and female making clapping noises with their bills and throwing their heads back. They are fairly unmistakeable and in flight hold their necks out straight, like all the storks, cranes, spoonbills etc. rather than bunching them up as per the herons, egrets and also the White Pelican which can at a distance in flight be mistaken for a stork. Juvenile White Storks look very similar to the adults, but with slightly duller red legs and bill with a dark tip.

White Stork, ©Sibylle Stofer, via Flickr Creative Commons.

White Stork painting.
Hurrah, another one I'm quite happy with :o)

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