Family Storks (Ciconiidae)


Oriental Stork (Ciconia boyciana)


French: Cigogne orientale German: Schwarzschnabelstorch Spanish: Cigüeña oriental
Other common names: Oriental White Stork

Ciconia boyciana


, 1873,

Yokohama, Honshu, Japan


Until recently included in C. ciconia, but the two are now universally accepted as distinct species. Monotypic.


Breeds in SE Siberia (Chita, Khabarovsk, Amur, Jewish Autonomous Region and Primorye) and in parts of NE China (Heilongjiang, Jilin and Inner Mongolia)#R; winters mainly in S & SE China (but wide scatter of records across C & SW China, S and W to Yunnan and Sichuan)#R, with a few in Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Formerly bred in Japan (until 1960s) and Korea (until 1977 or later in N, 1971 in S)#R. A summer vagrant in E Mongolia.

Descriptive notes

110–115 cm; male 4500–5500 g, female 3700–5000 g; wingspan 195–200 cm. Typical white-and-black stork with distinctive deep-based black bill (with red... read more


Gives weak “shuu” or “hyuu” prior to loud bill-clattering display on breeding grounds.


Marshes with scattered clumps of trees, wet grassland, riverbanks, preferably in woodland. In Japan... read more

Food and feeding

Variety of prey types: mainly fish, especially loach (Misgurnus fossilis), Perccottus glehni and Crucian carp (... read more


Laying in Apr–May, commencing mid Apr in Russian Far East and NE China (where first eggs hatch late May), but earliest chicks hatched... read more


Migratory, mostly over little-known areas of China; generally quits breeding grounds in mid Sept/... read more

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. CITES I. Legally protected in all range states. World population most recently estimated by BirdLife International at 1000–2499 mature individuals.... read more

Recommended citation

Elliott, A., Kirwan, G.M. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2018). Oriental Stork (Ciconia boyciana). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 24 March 2018).