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03/11/2015 In its letter of 03/11/2015 the European Commission confirmed that the quality of the final report is good. Event hoe to finalize the report some aspects need to be clarified, the Commission had suggested to publish final technical report on project's web site in order to reinforce the dissemination of technical information about the project.
Telemetry, one of the most progressive birds’ research methods, started to be used already two decades ago, and during this time it has provided invaluable knowledge about hundreds of species of birds. This research method is also put into use in Lithuania, and since this summer it was applied to the study of white storks, which was initiated by Mindaugas Dagys (Nature Research Center Laboratory of Avian Ecology) and Ramunas Žydelis (DHI, Denmark).
For centuries change of seasons is associated with white stork in Lithuania. Even now there is still vivid belief that white stork returning after winter is a symbol of the coming spring, because he brings back wagtail, who sometimes is even called “ice kicker”, who kicks out all ice with its funny tiny legs.

Although White Stork is a long distance migrant spending winters  even down to South Africa, sometimes there are exceptions from this rule. In the last years these birds more and more often stay in Lithuania in the cold season.


LESTO completed the project “White stork (ciconia ciconia) protection in Lithuania” which started in 2009 and was implemented together with the Lithuanian ornithologists society, Institute of Ecology of Natural Research Center, and partners – this year, 1520 new nest platforms will welcome storks returning to Lithuania. The nests have been put up on the supports of overhead electricity lines by electricity distribution company AB LESTO. To have the birds make nests in their natural habitats, which do not endanger them,  LESTO will continue putting up nests during planned repair works or when there is real danger for termination of electricity supply.


Although fields are still covered with snow and winter is not a hurry to retrieve, arrival of White Storks to their nests after a long journey is not far away. Now is the time to prepare for their return and to take care of their nests – to remove the top layer of nest material in very tall nests, to cut back overgrowing branches around nests in trees, to support nests damaged during winter storms, to reinforce nest platforms, so that returning birds have a safe place to breed and bring joy to their human neighbours.

A country-wide festival „Naisių vasara 2012“ on the 14-15th of July had attracked a lot of the families from whole territory of Lithuania. Like in previous year the Lithuanian Ornithological Society participated in the festival with a special programm. The Society introduced its activities with a main focus on the largest project „White Stock conservation in Lithuania“. It is interestingly that the simbol of the festival is flying White stork too. 


On the 28th June two chicks were ringed with metal and colour rings in the „Project nest“. Now everyone by the help of webcam can observe life history of each juvenile individually.

The ‚project‘ White stork pair has hatched two chicks on the 8th June. Very likely that the first chick was hatched on the7th June, however, grandmotherly parents were sitting, as we thought, on the eggs almost  all time and was imposible to detect freshly hatched fledgeling. This is extremely good news having in mind a tragedy, which happened on the 21 st April when ‘intruder’ White stork tried to grab already occupied nest with at least two eggs.

The "project" White stork pair has lie the second egg on the 20th April. The first egg appeared on the 18th April, i.e. five days later than in 2011. This delay is related with later arrival of the White storks: in 2011 the birds first time visited their nest on 29th March, while this year – on 6th April. The life history of the ‘project pair’ you can continually observe on the project website.

The ‚project‘ White stork pair layed the first egg on the 18th April, i.e. five days later than in 2011. This delay is related with later arrival of the White storks: in 2011 the birds first time visited their nest on 29th March, while this year – on 6th April. The life history of the ‘project pair’ you can continually observe on the project website.

A pair of the White storks came back to the „project“ nets in Riese settlement already. Life video is available on the internet.

Have a look on the life history of three White stork breeding pairs in Lithuania!  Watching of White storks life history on three breeding pairs in Lithuania is already available on the internet. The first webcam was arranged by LOD already in 2010 in the surroundings of Vilnius city in the frame of the White stork conservation project (financed by the LIFE+ Programme) and everyone can observe the storks family history every year of the internet.

The webcam broadcast from the White stork nest has started already! This is the same nest (located in the environ of Vilnius city) where Life video was available for the public in 2010 and 2011.

The Lithuanian Ornithological Society with project partners on the 21st March, 2012 submitted the project Mid-term Report to the European Commission. The text of the Report with the most important annexes will be placed on websites after the final approval of the document.
As we already mentioned, the first first skylarks were observed exactly at the day of the National Lark Festival Day (February 24). While the Lapwing – a some days earlier (National Lapwing Day – February 27), The rooks on the National Rook Day (March 4) were seen already on the nests in some areas of the country.

Stork Day is celebrated on 25 March. This holiday's main figure, the stork, was central to many Lithuanian agrarian beliefs. The white stork is usually felt to be the national bird of Lithuania.

After a long and cold winter we are waiting for spring, looking at the sky and hoping to see the first spring prophets more and more often. The first returned larks were observed noting the day of the lark (February 24). A little later but still waiting for the lapwing day (February 27) we could see lapwings and on the day of the rooks (March 4) – rooks, tidying up their nests. Perhaps the most  welcome birds that symbolize the beginning of the warm half-year – white storks – were first seen on the 12th of March in the meadows of Panevezys and Silute.

On the 18th of May, the second White Stork chick has hatched in the nest in Riešė, which may be observed live on the Internet.

On the 16th of May, the first White Stork chick has hatched in the nest in Riešė, which may be observed live on the Internet.

Spring is slowly comming to our country, but the present temperatures is sufficient to birds and they are already here, as always, going back almost on time. While the official white stork day is annualy 25th of March, Vilnius residents and guests were invited to welcome our white storks on 9th April. LOD, as Birdlife partner in Lithuania, having the aim to get people be more familiar with the life of storks, their migration routes and their protection, refered to the related customs, folklore, and arranged traditional white stork welcome festival in Sereikiskes park (in center of Vilnius).

On the 13th of April, White Storks have laid the first egg in the nest in Riešė, which may be observed live on the Internet.

On the 3d of April, the second White Stork has returned to the nest in Riešė, which may be observed live on the Internet.

On the 29th of March, the first White Stork has returned to the nest in Riešė, which may be observed live on the Internet.

It has been project Progress report presented for European Commission on 18th March, 2011. All documents are accessible in this website in Documents chapter.

Here you can observe LIVE streaming video of the White Stork nest during the entire breeding period!

Each spring the Lithuanian Ornithological Society invites you all to meet the returning birds! It is very important to know when white storks are comming back to our country.
Please use our tools included in the website for reporting the first sighting of the white stork. The site also provides information about white stork migration across all Europe.

On 19th November 2010 project steering committy meeting was held. Urgent enough issues related to White stork nests loaded on the air electric transmission lines have been discussed during the meeting (their future maintenance, responsibility, and so on).

Second season of lifting nesting platforms on roofs is ongoing! It is panned to install in total over 300 platforms till the end of November 2010. 
Each year Lithuanian Ornithological Society (LOD) announces a campaign called Bird of the year. Its main goal is to draw attention of professionals and public on the species that require exceptional human attention and care. In most cases bird of the year becomes a rare, little explored or highly endangered birds' species.
More than 300 residents of Vilnius were ringed and took pictures in the largest nest of White Stork in the country, which was built in the V. Kudirka Square. About 1,000 people visited the festival dedicated to celebrate the Year of White Stork.  The festival resembled the family holiday - the nest and the V. Kudirka memorial were full of climbing children.  Organizers of the festival - Lithuanian Ornithological Society, Eastern distribution networks and “VST” - presented the record size nest to the Lithuanian Centre of Young Naturalists.
At Sunday, April 25, at Vilnius V. Kudirka Square will be built huge white stork nest. Everyone can go in it and feel like a little stork, look around the surrounding area from 20 square meters nest. Huge white stork nest will be build for citizens of Vilnius for enjoy of returned a month ago to Lithuania storks. Inside the nest will sounds really Stork sounds and around it will buzzing the Stork Festival.

As part of the White Stork conservation project, Lithuanian Ornithological Society installed a webcam to allow direct monitoring of the entire White Stork breeding cycle. Internet broadcast will be available on this page shortly.


From 2010-02-15 we started an instalement of artificial nest platforms on roofs. We hape to manage as many as possible stork nests till the storks are coming back to Lithuania. Instalement works shall continue from September 2010. 

2010.02.03TV broadcast
TV broadcast on project. Please folow the link below for watching.

All those who wish White stork nests located on the roofs of buildings, replace with specially designed wooden nesting platform, please contact to Lithuanian Ornithological Society by e-mail or by phone: (8 5) 213 0498.


In centuries White Storks are related with seasons – faith, that returning of White storks in our country are the symbol of spring, is alive till now. White Stork brings on its tail wagtail (called ice-kicker in a folk) and this little bird kick out all ice with its fun legs. In the end of summer concentration of White Storks is the sign that autumn is coming. Since the ancient times people tell that White Storks leave our country in St. Bartholomew's Day, 24 August.

2009, 14 May Lithuanian Ornithological Society organized a trip to Rambyno Regional Park, in a colony of white storks.
2009, 4 April Lithuanian Ornithological Society invited all the citizens and guests to the City Park Sereikiškės to meet returning White Storks.

LESTO completed stork protection project – put up nests are welcoming the returning birds



The project “White stork protection in Lithuania”, which started in 2009, is partially financed by the European Union (EU) financial measure for environmental protection “LIFE+” – the funds necessary for putting up the nests made 5,043 million Litas, and the EU covered 50 percent of the expenses. Before this project, distribution network companies pursued the uplift of stork nests by their funds only. During the project, 3260 safe platforms were put up, which changed the stork nests dangerously made on overhead electricity lines. About 93 percent of platforms put up by LESTO are being occupied – storks make nests on them and hatch.

“Electricity line supports built due to people’s activity attract the attention of birds, they make nests in unnatural dangerous places – there is threat for birds as well as for the guarantee of reliable power supply. Therefore, during the project we put up a large part of stork nests, which were made on electricity lines, on special platforms – this way the birds, which chose unnatural nest places, are more protected, and more reliable power supply for residents is guaranteed. Certainly, electricians are not ornithologists, but we are trying to influence the environment by our activity as little as possible, we actively contribute to relevant environmental protection initiatives together with ornithologists”, - sais Virgilijus Žukauskas, Head of AB LESTO Electricity Grid Division.

During the project which took place with the EU support, 3260 special platforms have been put up in total. The biggest number of platforms – 810 – have been put up in Utena region, 736 – in Alytus region, 552 – in Klaipeda region, 352 – in Šiauliai region.

Stork nests made on electricity poles are neither safe for the birds nor for people. When storks touch electricity lines, they are often killed by electricity current, there are losses due to electricity leak or broken lines. Therefore the aim of the project is to ensure the protection of white storks, uplifting special platforms that are safe for the birds and for the overhead lines, to guarantee safe and reliable electrical power supply for residents.

“Everyone should pursue to have storks make their nests in natural locations – old trees or places where they are not threatened. Due to the neighborhood of storks there are electricity leakage losses as well as lines corrosion losses caused by the birds’ excrements, there is threat for the birds, and if lines are cut, residents suffer. There are cases when nests on overhead line posts burst into flames due to electricity discharge or lightning”, - explains V. Žukauskas.

Employees of electricity distribution networks have been implementing the stork nest transfer work for several years already. Every autumn and early in spring, when storks are gone, their nests, which are made in the most dangerous places on overhead electricity line poles are transferred – special metal supports with platforms are fixed to the poles, and birds make their nests on them later. Such nest places are safer and more reliable for the surrounding people as well as for the birds.

Storks make their nests directly on overhead electricity line poles, they often extend and reach the lines. Such basis for the nests is unstable, therefore they start nodding and fall on the ground, often disconnecting the lines. Platforms put up by LESTO guarantee that nests made on the platforms will not burst into flames due to short circuit, and young storks learning to fly as well as adult storks hatching in such nests will be further from dangerous voltage.

In July 2012 LESTO announced a photo competition “Season of storks”, where people could win an opportunity to take a look at the Earth from the stork’s flight. 270 participants from entire Lithuania, who sent 588 photos of storks in their natural environment, competed in the competition is announced on the website

According to the calculations of ornithologists, there are more than 20 thousand white storks in the country. Ornithologists say that a stork nest is a large and long lasting construction, which storks complement with new material each year. Some stork nests have impressive dimensions – there are nests, the height of which is over 2 meters. During showers, nests sop and their weight increases (it may reach up to 1,5 tons), therefore trees or house roofs sometimes break, and electricity lines are disconnected.

About white storks:

A white stork is a large bird which weighs about 4 kg. In Lithuania, most stork couples hatch individually, however small colonies are sometimes found, where a few nests are made close to each other – even in the same tree. In our country there are only a few close colonies, where several couples hatch in a small area. A stork is considered an indicator of ecologic and safe environment for people as well as of sparing agriculture.

Naturally, storks make nests in old trees with thin crown, or on buildings, constructions. They like using platforms for nests put up on trees by people. Storks feed on small vertebrates and large invertebrates. They mass where feeding conditions improve – in mowed, ploughed areas.

The largest colony of storks in Lithuania is in Bitėnų village, near Rambynas. Each year about 50 couples of storks hatch there. There are pines in Bitėnai, where storks have made several nests in each. This phenomenon is unique because storks usually make nests individually, having their own feeding territory.

A white stork is a part of the old Lithuanian customs. Antecedents believed, that a stork seen for the first time might fate a lot for the year. A flying stork means that everything will go fast and smoothly, and a sitting bird means that things will go slowly that year. If an unmarried girl sees a flying stork it means she will get married this year, and if a stork is sitting – she will stay in her parents’ home. On the day storks return, the warm half of the year begins, and old people say that bears roll out of their den on that day.


According to the information of Lithuanian society of ornithologists


Release prepared by:

Ernestas Naprys

AB LESTO spokesman

Tel. 8 5 251 4516

Mob. 8 696 76469


AB LESTO – Lithuanian operator of distribution networks, implementing power distribution and public power supplier’s activity since January 1, 2011. At present LESTO services more than 1,5 million electricity consumers in the entire territory of the country. In 2012 the company was acknowledged as one of the most attractive Lithuanian employers – it took 4th place in the independent “CV Market” survey. In 2013, LESTO has been invited to preside for the National network of socially responsible companies (“Global Compact” network in Lithuania).