White Stork | Ciconia ciconia

Robert's Birding Information: White Stork

The White Stork is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Ciconiidae bird family group which includes birds such as Storks.White Stork

The description for the White Stork (Latin name Ciconia ciconia) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Ciconia ciconia can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 83 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 623. You will find a picture of the White Stork on page 593.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.White Stork

There have been no changes in the common name between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the White Stork between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition.

The White Stork is known in Afrikaans as Witooievaar.

The White Stork has a height of 125 cms and weighs around 3500 gms. The head is coloured white while the bill is coloured red. The Ciconia ciconia has a white coloured throat, red legs and a white coloured back. The eyes are brown.

The male Ciconia ciconia has physical features that are slightly different from the female bird.White Stork Soaring In Sky

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is white.

Eyes are brown.

Bill is red.

Legs are red.

Throat is white.

Back is white.

White Stork Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground.

This bird has a specially adapted bill which helps it hunt for fish, crabs, shrimp and other aquatic animals in the water.

This bird hunts for small reptiles such as lizards, geckos and bush snakes. The White Stork strikes poisonous snakes on the head with one fatal blow which kills the snake instantly. There have been cases were this bird has been killed by a snake while hunting. Some birds have been blinded by Cobra venom.

This bird eats insects such as butterflies, bees, wasps, locusts and ants. These invertebrates are usually hawked aerially, killed and then eaten.

White Stork Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The White Stork is a monogamous bird which means that the bird finds and breeds with one partner for the rest of its life. The bird lays between 1 to 6 eggs and they are coloured white.

The nest is built high up in the tree canopy and is protected from predators by branches and the dense green foliage.

The White Stork is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

The bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.

The White Stork is found in the Southern African wetlands, riverine forests and moist grasslands.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The White Stork is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.