|The storks gather from all East-European countries and migrate south. They spend only one night in Israel, and in the next morning continue to Africa. Last Friday, Aug. 28th 2009 was a record number for one day. At 08:47 exactly, a large flock of over 10,000 storks took off from the fields of kibutz Tirat Zvi (in Emek Beit She’an). “The silent flight and only squeaks of the wings are heard. A truly spiritual experience” said one observer.
The storks use thermal air spinning up to racing high altitudes. Within 80 minutes they are over Jericho, continue through Arad crossing the Negev south towards the Sinai desert. One third of the storks don’t make the journey. So are 40% of the youngsters, making it for the first time. The lucky ones return to the same nest in the north with the same mate, year after year.
More about Storks:
Storks’ size, serial monogamy, and faithfulness to an established nesting site contribute to their prominence in mythology and culture.
These storks feed on frogs, insects, young birds, lizards and rodents. They fly with the neck outstretched, like most other storks, but unlike herons which retract their neck in flight.
The migratory species like the White Stork and the Black Stork soar on broad wings and rely on thermals of hot air for sustained long distance flight. Since thermals only form over land, these storks, like large raptors, must cross the Mediterranean at the narrowest points, and many of these birds can be seen going through the Straits of Gibraltar and the Bosporus on migration
Photography by Uri Rosenberg