Migrating Storks Can't Resist a Garbage Dump Feast
Garbage dumps may be such attractive pit stops for some storks that they shorten their migration routes to pay a visit, a new study suggests.
A few years ago, Andrea Flack, a postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, was tracking the path of white storks from Germany, trying to get close enough to the birds to download flight data from the GPS trackers attached to their backs. Flack eventually found herself standing in an open garbage dump in Morocco, staring at her research subjects. Instead of migrating across the Sahara Desert like many other white stork populations, these birds preferred to spend the winter feeding on trash.