Black Stork | Ciconia nigra



While not an uncommon bird internationally, the Black Stork is a very rare passage migrant or visitor to Japan. However, almost every winter a single bird or sometimes two or three spend the coldest months of the year at Isahaya.

This year an adult arrived first and then was joined later by a juvenile. Local birders think the adult is the same bird that has been wintering here over the past five seasons, arriving first as a juvenile.

The new juvenile could be its offspring, although this cannot be confirmed and the fact they arrived about a month apart further puts this relationship in doubt – or do offspring somehow inherit their parents’ migration habits???

This morning I was able to get some good shots of these shy birds.

Firstly I could photograph the adult as it landed, and later the juvenile as it took off and flew past me.

Black Stork (adult)

John Wright

John Wright

John Wright is an Australian wildlife photographer and bird guide based in Kyushu, Japan. John became seriously engaged in nature photography while living in Japan and then Thailand. He returned to Japan in 2008 and has since concentrated on wildlife photography, especially birds. John visits Southeast Asia and Australia regularly, but usually travels within the Japanese archipelago, where he also guides visiting birders and wildlife photography enthusiasts.

John Wright

John Wright

John Wright is an Australian wildlife photographer and bird guide based in Kyushu, Japan. John became seriously engaged in nature photography while living in Japan and then Thailand. He returned to Japan in 2008 and has since concentrated on wildlife photography, especially birds. John visits Southeast Asia and Australia regularly, but usually travels within the Japanese archipelago, where he also guides visiting birders and wildlife photography enthusiasts.

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Susan Lee

I think the migration is learned. The first parent(s) may have been blown to the area by storms or typhoons, and the chicks, as most birds tend to, learn and remember. This would account for just these very few.

Susan Lee

I think the migration is learned. The first parent(s) may have been blown to the area by storms or typhoons, and the chicks, as most birds tend to, learn and remember. This would account for just these very few.