The black stork is an endangered species in many countries, due to its low adaptability to environmental changes and its sensitivity to anthropogenic disturbances. In Italy, the most recent report on the species’ nesting sites lists only 36 pairs, of which 16 are in Basilicata, 7 are in Calabria, 4 are in Piedmont and Molise and 1 is in Campania. This study focuses for the first time on the behavior of a Ciconia nigra pair in the Basilicata region, where the species nests exclusively on cliffs rather than in trees, as is more frequent elsewhere. The video recordings were used to observe the species during the pre- and post-hatching periods and to refer to the 2012 nesting season, as in that year, the video recordings covered the entire reproductive period. In the pre-hatching phase, the activity for which most time is spent is brooding, which lasts on average 43′ in the morning and in evening and more than 49′ at midday. In the post-hatching phase, a large part of the recording period is spent on activities related to parental care. There were no moments of inactivity during this phase, the parents were frequently observed setting up the nest and preening themselves, while they were rarely seen in a huddled position. The alert activity was also very frequent, especially at midday. Our study has shown that the black stork, a shy and cautious species, may return to nest in increasing numbers given the development of the promising Lucanian nucleus, if attention is paid to the habitat quality and feeding areas, where human activities should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

First Report on a Cliff-Nesting Pair of Black Storks (Ciconia nigra Linnaeus, 1758) and Their Nestlings

Pierangelo Freschi;Carlo Cosentino
;
Fabio Napolitano;Corrado Pacelli;Rosanna Paolino;Ada Braghieri
2023-01-01

Abstract

The black stork is an endangered species in many countries, due to its low adaptability to environmental changes and its sensitivity to anthropogenic disturbances. In Italy, the most recent report on the species’ nesting sites lists only 36 pairs, of which 16 are in Basilicata, 7 are in Calabria, 4 are in Piedmont and Molise and 1 is in Campania. This study focuses for the first time on the behavior of a Ciconia nigra pair in the Basilicata region, where the species nests exclusively on cliffs rather than in trees, as is more frequent elsewhere. The video recordings were used to observe the species during the pre- and post-hatching periods and to refer to the 2012 nesting season, as in that year, the video recordings covered the entire reproductive period. In the pre-hatching phase, the activity for which most time is spent is brooding, which lasts on average 43′ in the morning and in evening and more than 49′ at midday. In the post-hatching phase, a large part of the recording period is spent on activities related to parental care. There were no moments of inactivity during this phase, the parents were frequently observed setting up the nest and preening themselves, while they were rarely seen in a huddled position. The alert activity was also very frequent, especially at midday. Our study has shown that the black stork, a shy and cautious species, may return to nest in increasing numbers given the development of the promising Lucanian nucleus, if attention is paid to the habitat quality and feeding areas, where human activities should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.
2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11563/172275
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