The first storks have returned to their nests in Plankendael Zoo after their winter vacation in the south. Every year, most of the birds flock to warmer climes to escape the icy Belgian winter where they remain for about five months before returning home.
Of the huge flock of storks, just 31 remain in Belgium throughout the winter. The caretakers have now counted 20 birds that have returned. The expect the Plankendael colony of 207 birds to regroup over the next few months.
The zoo released a video of the returning birds settling back into their familiar nests to renovate them and snuggle up against the still-chilly Belgian weather.
The flock of 207 storks is a record for the zoo, and for the whole of Belgium. Just last year, the Plankendael caretakers found and tagged 145 chicks and noted that 86 nests were occupied.