Stork Travels 8000 Miles to Be
Reunited with Injured Lover
No distance is too far for Rodan,
the lovesick stork.
Making the trip from South Africa to
Croatia every spring, the male bird
travels 13,000 km to see his beloved
female partner, Malena, who is
disabled and unable to fly.
The loving storks cozy up, mating
and raising their new chicks (they
have produced 32 offspring so far)
and teaching them how to fly. Rodan
then departs to spend the winter
months in South Africa and returns
on exactly the same day, the
Locals in the small village of
Slavonski Brod in Croatia thought
crippled Malena would die when she was shot by a
hunter in 1993. But thanks to the Vokic family, whose roof she lives
on and her ever faithful partner,
Rodan, she has survived for over 17
Reunited again this spring, Rodan
was more eager than ever to see his
love, arriving two hours earlier
than usual. “It was clear they were
pleased to see each other,” said one
local. Stjepan Vokic
added, “He knows he needs to return
home because Malena is waiting for
The storks have become so famous that
it’s not only Malena that waits anxiously for her
partner to return, local residents
and reporters gather round to
welcome the tired bird home, every
Lets hope the couple’s little chicks
will be just as loyal and faithful
as their Papa!
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