The number of breeding stork pairs reached a new record - but sadly many of the storklets died.
Almost every year there is a new breeding record of storks in Germany. Bavaria-wide, the number of storks has risen from 272 to 300 this year, but more than half of the storklets froze or starved to death as a result of the long, cold and wet periods regionally. In some regions the rate has been higher than 70% of all young storks. Especially the chicks of the experienced adults died because they'd bred earlier in the spring and the chicks hatched in the cold and wet weather period. The elder chicks were too big to find protection under the feathers of the parents, and some of the little chicks didn't get enough food because the adults couldn't find enough mice, frogs and snakes (the main food of the storks) on the high meadows because the farmers were not able to cut because of the wet period. An adult must bring one kilogram (1000 grams, or about 2.2 pounds) of food per day to each chick; the weight of a mouse is about 20-40 grams (30 grams is about one ounce).
The picture on the right is the Bornheim/Sportplatz nest © AKtion Pfalzstorch www.pfalzstorch.de.