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Reviving the white stork population in Sweden

Wetland areas in southern Sweden are undergoing a restoration project that will help rehabilitate the dwindling white stork population. The white stork was almost completely eradicated in this area in the 1950s when the wetlands were drained for agricultural land, depleting the birds’ main source of food and habitat. The White Stork as an Ambassador for Wetlands project focuses on an inclusive approach to habitat restoration by partnering with the community and utilizing diverse scientific and local knowledge.

The project, led by Naturskyddsföreningen i Skåne (Swedish Society for Nature Conservation Skåne) and Skånes Ornitologiska Förening (Skåne Ornithological Association), a regional branch of BirdLife Sweden, will restore and enhance the local wetland areas to give the white stork and other species who benefit from it greater access to their natural habitats. According to the Society for Ecological Restoration (SER), the white stork will produce around 40% more fledged young when provided with a high-quality habitat, encouraging a more stable population.

The restoration efforts align with SER standards by implementing a comprehensive plan that utilizes university science research, historical farming knowledge, habitat assessments, community partnership, and more. Alongside the restoration of the wetlands, the project will expand outreach to local farmers to encourage collaboration and raise awareness of the efforts. Education surrounding the environmental effects of the history of wetland draining aims to teach landowners and farmers about how to best support the restoration efforts on their own properties.

In the future, the project will provide informational events and opportunities for visitors to learn about the white stork and the ongoing rehabilitation efforts.

Learn more about Microsoft investments in Sweden.