White Storks (Ciconia ciconia), those birds rare in Albania but so close to mankind, are now back and ready to nest again. Both future parents have started building their nest, at the same place as one year or many years ago. In 2017, there were only 4-5 nests of White Storks in Albania, One nest was located at the top of a line tower while the rest in churches or worship places demonstrating thus that human disturbance is a limiting factor. This is in stark contrast with the 1950s’ when White Storks were in hundreds and very common in every urban area of the Western Lowland and in other wetland areas of Albania as Maliq dhe Korça, Narta and Vlora, Tërbufi and Lushnja, Karavasta and Divjaka, Durrësi, Lezha, Velipoja etc. Their sharp reduction was first due to the disappearance of marshlands as suitable foraging habitats. This first reduction was amplified by the intensification of the agriculture, urbanization, industrial development, infrastructure and oil and gas extraction. Today they are threatened also from human disturbance, electrocution and collision with power lines. Could the number of White Storks increase again in Albania? Sure but only through measures of protection and management. PS. Anybody having information on White Storks in Albania, is welcomed to write us in our inbox! Thank you!

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