White Stork ( Ciconia ciconia, family: Ciconiidae)

The White Stork (Latin name Ciconia ciconia) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 83 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 623 also a picture of the White Stork on page 593. The White Stork belongs to the family of birds classified as Ciconiidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the White Stork is also known by these other names: European White Stork.

The map of the Kruger you see on this page shows the areas (coloured orange) where this bird has been identified. The basic information was provided by the Avian Demographic Unit based at UCT and I created the maps from that information ... the green dots show the locations of the various Kruger National Park Rest Camps

The White Stork is neither Endemic or near Endemic to the Kruger National Park. It is however a common resident

In terms of distribution of the White Stork in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. White Stork : see above distribution map.

Kruger Park White StorkIdentification assistance for this avian species ...

One of the first indicators to take note of when trying to identify a bird is it relative size. For example how big is the bird compared to a well known familiar bird. The White Stork is a large bird very much bigger than a Pied Crow. The height of the White Stork is about 125 cms and its weight is about 3500 gms

You will find that the male White Stork plumage and colours are different to that of the female White Stork

  • Head is white.
  • Eye is brown.
  • Bill is red.
  • Throat is white.
  • Back is white.
  • Legs are red.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The White Stork feeds on the ground and in or around water mainly




Aquatic life forms

Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The White Stork is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Ciconia ciconia will seek out a new mate

The nesting habit of White Stork is to create the nest in branches of a tree or shrub. The bird lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 1 to 6

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for White Stork are: woodlands and grasslands . The White Stork is also at home in wetland areas.

You can expect to see White Stork in flocks, or pairs or as single birds.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Ingwamza/Unowanga

Zulu ... uNogolantethe/uNowanga

Afrikaans ...Witooievaar

German ... Weistorch

Portuguese ... Cegonha-branca

French ... Cigogne blanche

Dutch ... (Gewone) Ooievaar

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For in-depth birding information please refer to these authoritative avian references ...

Robert's 7th edition number ... 83

The main reference source for this data was "Roberts - Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition" . Other references were "Newmans Birds of the Kruger Park" by Keith Newman published circa 1980 . Names in foreign languages were obtained from the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town website , www.fitzpatrick.uct.ac.za