No distance is too far for Rodan...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 unable to fly.
The loving storks cozy up, mating and raising their new chicks (they have produced 32 offspring so far). Rodan then departs to spend the winter months in South Africa and returns on exactly the same day, the following spring.
Locals in the small village of Slavonski Brod in Croatia thought crippled Malena would almost certainly 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 years.
Reunited again last week, Rodan was more eager than ever to see his love, arriving two hours earlier than usual.
The storks have become so famous in the village that its not only Malena that waits anxiously for her partner to return, local residents and reporters gather round to welcome the tired bird home, every March. Lets hope the couples little chicks will be just as loyal and faithful as their Papa!
From the Romanian Times:
"When Italian hunters shot this female stork called Malena, local vets in Croatia were the stork had been nesting revealed that although they had saved her life -- she would never fly again.
"She was placed back in her nest with her young and when her partner named Rodan flew south with their young they expected that she would eventually die and certainly never mate again.
"But their predictions that she would not live were foiled after the Vokic family where she had a nest helped to feed her through the long winter months and now -- amazingly -- every year Rodan returns to mate with his partner and rear another clutch of chicks."
"Because she can't fly Rodan teaches the little ones to fly and accompanies them south every season."
Jennie, I am so very sorry that I didn't see this beautiful story until today. What a love story and how the male travels thousands of miles to reunite with his mate that is unable to follow him is mind boggling! I would love to see pictures of their offspring!
Thank you so much for posting this awesome story1
This story is so amazing that I am going to blue pin it...it's a tale that will endure the ages.
Birds are amazing!
Thanks Jenny and Samantha also.