James Walsh, aka The Mancunian Birder, is a qualified Ecologist and Eco-tour guide… his journey researching the White Stork includes visiting Coto Donana in Spain, Winsford in Cheshire, Blackpool Zoo in Lancashire, South Lakes Safari Park in Cumbria, the Norfolk Broads, Worcestershire and Kirby Misperton in Yorkshire…

The White Stork is an inspirational bird to many people – it is a bird that unites people around the world, especially in Europe, Russia, Africa and Asia.

White Stork is the unofficial national bird of Ukraine, and is becoming an international symbol of peace and humanitarian efforts.  

White Stork is a bird that unites Russian and Ukranian people, especially in the countryside and farmland areas, where these birds closely associate with humans, especially in villages and on farms.

A census in 2004/2005 found approximately 30,000 pairs of White Storks in Ukraine and approximately 10,200 pairs of White Storks in Russia.

Eastern Europe is a stronghold for this species – Poland, Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, Hungary and Bulgaria all have significant populations.

Conservation and re-introduction programmes in Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Sweden, and now in England, have resulted in White Storks starting to breed again in areas where they formerly bred.

Humans and White Storks generally have a mutualistic symbiotic relationship and can live in harmony in close proximity, in rural and urban areas. White Storks are frequently found in folklore, representing peace, happiness, fertility, birth and rebirth.

In eastern China, Jiangxi province, there is a bird protection project reinforcing an Oriental White Stork nest on top of a transmission tower that is really inspiring people on social media. One hundred and fifteen artificial nests have been built in China for Oriental White Storks, a real sign of progress.

On Earth Day, in the United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, as we approach the Global Biodiversity Framework Conferences, in Kenya in June 2022, and in China in August 2022, it is becoming ever more important for birds such as the White Stork to be seen as symbols of peace and representations of ecosystem restoration, conservation and working together for the benefit of humanity and the environment.

Should you want to find out more about the White Stork, James has kindly included the following links:

Secrets of Nature, Storks – A Village Rooftop Saga https://youtu.be/tHrDLiLYv4E

A Song For Peace – White Stork https://youtu.be/pgieKhronmI

The Oldham Times – White Storks hatch in the wild in the UK for the first time in centuries https://www.theoldhamtimes.co.uk/news/national/18454391.wild-white-storks-hatch-uk-first-time-centuries/

White Storks build a nest in West Yorkshire http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/west_yorkshire/3653171.stm

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