National

Protected white stork rebuilds typhoon-damaged nest in Tokushima

Kyodo

A protected oriental white stork in Naruto, Tokushima Prefecture, has started rebuilding its nest after it was blown away by gusts from Typhoon Noul earlier in the week.

The male stork was born in Hyogo Park of the Oriental White Stork in Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture in May 2011 and departed when it was two months old.

Earlier this month it was spotted nesting on top of a utility pole in Naruto, about 150 km away. An official at Toyooka city office, which operates the park, said this is the first time such a bird has nested so far from the park.

Oriental white storks are designated as a “special natural monument” in Japan. The Hyogo park has been breeding them and releasing them into the wild. The bird was identified from a leg band it was wearing.

According to farmer Toshio Okino, a 1-year-old female stork that appears to be the other half of the pair, was looking for food in the area but flew away when another female stork alighted on a nearby rice paddy.

The typhoon that hit the region on Tuesday left only a few twigs on the electricity pole, according to the Tokushima branch of the Wild Bird Society of Japan. But the 4-year-old stork started rebuilding the nest again on Wednesday morning, and had built it up to about half the original size by the afternoon, the society said.

“The male (stork) was trying hard to carry twigs despite the strong wind. I felt the strength in him,” said Okino. “I hope he will breed safely in Naruto.”