Photos

Photographer's Note

A record number of White Storks have been seen this year in Portugal. During my visit to the south I saw a lot of them

Storks are large, long-legged, long-necked wading birds with long stout bills, belonging to the family Ciconiidae. They are the only family in the biological order Ciconiiformes, which was once much larger and held a number of families.

They occur in most of the warmer regions of the world and tend to live in drier habitats than the related herons, spoonbills, and ibises; they also lack the powder down that those groups use to clean off fish slime. Storks have no syrinx and are mute, giving no bird call; bill-clattering is an important mode of stork communication at the nest. Many species are migratory. Most storks eat frogs, fish, insects, earthworms, and small birds or mammals. There are 19 living species of storks in six genera.

Storks tend to use soaring, gliding flight, which conserves energy. Soaring requires thermal air currents. Ottomar Anschütz's famous 1884 album of photographs of storks inspired the design of Otto Lilienthal's experimental Gliders of the late 19th century. Storks are heavy, with wide wingspans: the Marabou Stork, with a wingspan of 3.2 m (10.5 ft), joins the Andean Condor in having the widest wingspan of all living land birds.
Their nests are often very large and may be used for many years. Some have been known to grow to over 2 m (6 ft) in diameter and about 3 m (10 ft) in depth. Storks were once thought to be monogamous, but this is only partially true. They may change mates after migrations, and may migrate without a mate. They tend to be attached to nests as much as partners.

Storks' size, serial monogamy, and faithfulness to an established nesting site contribute to their prominence in mythology and culture

Nikon D90
2010/04/08 09:10:22
Lens: VR 18-200mm F/3.5-5.6 G
Focal Length: 200mm
Exposure Mode: Manual
Metering Mode: Multi-Pattern
1/1000 sec - F/5.6
Exposure Comp.: -1.0 EV
Sensitivity: ISO 400
Optimize Image: Vivid
White Balance: Auto
AF Mode: AF-C
Image Comment:
Long Exposure NR: Off
VR Control: On
High ISO NR: Off

Photo Information
Viewed: 2632
Points: 40
Discussions
Additional Photos by Aires dos Santos (AiresSantos) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6708 W: 209 N: 14053] (56155)
View More Pictures
explore TREKEARTH