White stork - the bird of happiness

White stork - the bird of happiness
White stork - the bird of happiness

Storks belong to the stork order of the stork family, which also includes herons and ibis. The most famous representative of this family is the white stork. He is known from numerous legends and legends.

white storks

From time immemorial, the white stork was considered a revered bird, it was associated with good luck, prosperity and happiness. A large number of legends and tales are associated with the white stork in Europe and the East, where he acts as the guardian of the family hearth and the protector from evil spirits. Previously, it was believed that the arrival of a stork contributes to the appearance of a long-awaited child in the family, so childless families relied on the help of these birds.

Due to the reduction of the vocal cords, adult storks have almost no voice. The most commonly heard beak clicking is used to greet. The white stork is a beautiful and rather large bird, its mass can reach four kilograms. The wingspan is up to 205 centimeters, and the body length can reach 120 centimeters. The white stork has a long neck, long legs and a long beak. The plumage of males and females (females are slightly smaller than males) is the same: they are covered with white feathers,the exception is black wings. According to folk legends, God endowed the stork with white plumage, and the devil with black wings, so it symbolizes the eternal struggle between good and evil. White storks live quite a long time, their average lifespan can be up to 20 years.

white stork

The main area of ​​distribution of birds is the Iberian Peninsula, all of Europe, as well as North Africa and Asia. White storks winter in India and on the African continent, and many birds from Central Europe are sent to Asia. During the spring migration, they have to fly 200 kilometers a day. The main migration routes of white storks are flights through the Mediterranean Sea, the Straits of Gibr altar, the Bosphorus and the Isthmus of Suez. There you can see huge concentrations of white storks at high altitude in spring and autumn.

The basis for feeding white storks are various invertebrates and medium-sized vertebrates, which they prey on land and in water. Small mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish and insects are food that this bird loves very much. The white stork eats even small rabbits, which determines its predatory nature. Often, storks eat inedible objects mistaken for food, which leads to blockage of the digestive tract and death.

The main place of settlement of white storks are the roofs of houses, outbuildings, rarely - rocks and trees. Many white storks have been using the same nests for over a century, passing them down from generation to generation. They bravely defend their nests and chicks from other birds.It takes more than a week for a bird to build a new nest, so the white stork often repairs the old settlement site. The nest can reach impressive sizes. As a rule, the clutch contains four to five eggs. White storks incubate eggs in turn, and after a month helpless chicks hatch, which become independent at the age of 70 days.

bird white stork

Currently, the number of white storks is declining every year due to chemicalization and intensification of agricultural products, resulting in a reduction in the food supply of birds.

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