The White Stork Ciconia ciconia in Sicily: updating after 30 years of colonization. The aim of thisstudy was to analyze changes in population size, breeding success and nest location of a local WhiteStork Ciconia ciconia population in Sicily from 1991 to 2020. We gathered all the available data andfield records regarding the species in Sicily and carried out several distribution maps outlining thestatus of the White Stork in Sicily. Field work was then concentrated on studying and monitoringthe two most numerous colonies (“Piana di Gela” and “Piana di Catania”). During the 29 years,population size (HPa) varied from 1 breeding pair (1991) to 82 breeding pairs (2013). The Sicilianpopulation of 2018-2020 is 64-71 pairs, i.e. 22.8% of the Italian breeding population. Many pairsbuild a nest on top of medium voltage pylons. The highest numbers were noted in “Piana di Gela”,which resulted to hold the largest colony in Italy. Censuses of breeding pairs showed a sharp increasein the population between 2010 and 2011, with a modest increase in the following years. Since 2016 there was a decline in the number of pairs. Among the greatest risks is foraging in landfill and subsequentresting spots on nearby power poles, which increases the risk of electrocution. During theresearch, conservation measures (mowing of grasslands due to increase the food supply for nestlings,creation of a mosaic of native grasslands and meadows, wetland restoration) were implemented. Anew protected nature reserve was established to safeguard the agroecosystems and wetlands of the“Piana di Gela”.
|Numero di pagine||20|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2020|