Miska did air patrol duty

Tue, 05/02/2023 - 19:03

A strange incident was observed on 30 April between 14:11 and 14:13 near the stork nest in Vlaha. Leske was clutching eggs when four storks circling high above approached the nest. Two of them descended, one of them even landed on the nest and, together with Leske, scared away the other descender by loud bill clattering. It was then confirmed that Miska was the stork that had landed on the nest. 
The discovery that he had previously been on air patrol, receiving and chasing incomers in the air, just as army fighters do when an unregistered aircraft enters the country's airspace, was a novelty. This example illustrates that the stork is already in the air trying to signal to approaching intruders that they have strayed onto private property. In the majority of cases, the intruders take note of this. 
Many times in the past, we have observed that one of the storks arrived at the nest at the same time as the intruding stranger. Previously, we thought that he had noticed the approaching storks at the last moment and had interrupted his feeding to dash home. Now, however, we believe that the simultaneous arrival of the distant nest guard and the alien stork indicates that the arrival at the nest was preceded by air patrol. The nest guard had accompanied the intruder in the air, but the alert was ineffective, so it flew to the nest to fight off the intruder at close range if necessary.