Birdwatchers in southern Taiwan were over the moon earlier this month when a rare oriental stork (Ciconia boyciana) appeared for the first time in nine years, however, the bird was found dead this morning, October 27, of apparent electrocution.
The stork was first spotted in Yong’an Wetlands, Kaohsiung City in mid-October, when it was noted that the bird was tagged with the number “E37,” and fitted with a satellite transmitter.
The bird was found to have been bred by researchers in South Korea, and released into the wild in September.
The migration route for the oriental stork usually brings the birds to East China for the winter. However, due to adverse weather, or other conditions, the oriental stork sometimes appears in Taiwan.
The last time an oriental stork wintered in Taiwan was 2011.
The Oriental stork is classified as endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
The Korean researchers contacted the Taiwan Eco-Travel Promotion Association yesterday, after they found the satellite tracker to not be moving. Huang Shu-ting, President of a local bird photography group, went to a fish farm to search for the bird this morning, and found it dead next to a power pole.
Biologists examined the bird and found it to have suffered electrical burns. It was concluded that the stork had died after being electrocuted.
Cover Picture: Wikipedia.
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