Tuesday, June 12, 2012

White Stork

The white stork has white plumage with black on its wings and red legs and a red beak. 
They winter in Africa, from below the Sahara, all the way down to South Africa, or on the Indian subcontinent. When they migrate to Europe, they avoid crossing the Mediterranean Sea as the air thermals they rely on for flight do not form over water. 
So they either travel through the Levant in the east or the Strait of Gibralter in the west. They build large stick nests and are often helped out by platforms built by humans for that purpose. 
The stork picture here was nesting on a platform on a church in Colmar, France. It had at least two babies in the nest (stork, not human). In Strasbourg, France, our tour bus drove down a boulevard near the offices of the European Union where stork nests were located in the tops of many of the trees in a two or three block area. We must have seen 30 or 40 nests, many of them with one to four stork babies. I have seen storks in flight in Spain and it is magnificent to see these large birds in flight.

A year earlier, in Ephesus, Turkey, we saw some storks downtown, one on top of a building and another standing on a nest.
White stork in Ephesus, Turkey.

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