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After 600 years, white stork makes a triumphant comeback in UK

The Cheshire Wildlife Trust saw a majestic white stork in the UK 600 years after its disappearance.

After 600 years, white stork makes a triumphant comeback in UK
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | Serhat Aktepe

White storks are magnificent birds, but their populations have dwindled over the years. Although they are seen in some regions worldwide, they are rarely spotted in the UK. However, a species of white storks, thought to be extinct in the UK for 600 years, were recently seen in a rare sighting, according to the Warrington Guardian. The Cheshire Wildlife Trust was thrilled to witness the birds, which was a delightful moment for the country. Darren Banks, the trust’s land management officer, shared his team's excitement and disbelief at the extraordinary sighting.

Representative Image Source: Pexels| Suede
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Suede

“I thought it was a common crane at first but after watching it for a while I realized it was a white stork!” he exclaimed. As the graceful bird soared through the skies, he couldn't help but admire its beauty. “It was fantastic to witness it circling overhead with its incredible wing span,” Banks added.

The species was believed to be extinct in the UK for 600 years, but efforts to preserve the storks' heritage have continued. While several projects aim to ensure their safety, Banks noted, “There are no upcoming plans to re-introduce them here in Cheshire but it was a great sign to see one this far north!"

Representative Image Source: Pexels| Denitsa Kireva
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Denitsa Kireva

Fortunately, the birds that hadn't been seen even by the grandparents and great-grandparents of today have started breeding and hatching in recent years, according to Good News Network. The sight of these birds has provided an optimistic and uplifting glimpse of nature to many residents. Storks, like all species, have unique abilities and features. These tall and elegant birds are known not only for their white feathers and graceful presence but also for their charming spirits.

Malena and Keleptan are a stork duo that has shared a heartwarming example of their fellow birds’ love and thoughtfulness. Malena was taken into shelter by a 71-year-old widow after being injured and unable to fly, per AFP. A few years later, Malena met Klepetan and the duo took off well. However, as nature requires, the storks migrate to South Africa every August. Klepetan would make his 8000-mile journey like his fellow mates. Unfortunately for Malena, being unable to fly, she was restricted to staying in her newfound home.


Kelepetan went against the odds and hung onto Malena loyally. The male stork migrates per his schedule but always returns to see Malena. For two decades, the stork has been making his way to Malena every March to be with her before he can make his trip back to his habitat. The internet has seen several glimpses of the duo’s overwhelming love and understanding. Mirka Brůnová shared a post of the Malena and Klepetan. The Lewis Pugh Foundation also tweeted in the couple's honor, “Meet Klepetan - the South African stork who migrated to Croatia every year for 19 years to visit his love Malena, a female stork left unable to fly after being shot by a hunter. Who said long-distance doesn’t work?"


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