stork migration in Spain

Storks back early

December 4th, 2009 Large numbers of storks have returned to Spain several months early from the Sahel driven not by global warming but by African drought and the promise of rich pickings on Iberian rubbish tips and ricefields. Some 30,000 don’t even bother making the journey anymore. La Crónica Verde

Rise in stork population

March 21st, 2009

The population of storks in Spain is continuing to rise, rising from 6,700 pairs in the mid-1980s to 35,000 pairs today. Specifically in Catalonia numbers have risen from just 8 pairs in 1974 to 358. The reasons for their recovery lie in a greater respect for their nests, more nature reserves, availability of food from rubbish tips and the change in their habits due to warmer temperatures. This latter point has meant that some 10,000 storks no longer undertake the arduous migration to Africa, but instead migrate to sites in southern Spain. It appears that the old Castilian adage Por san Blas la cigüeña verás in reference to the arrival of storks in early February (San Blas is on 3rd February) no longer applies.