NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Wood storks are nesting in a southwest Florida sanctuary they had abandoned several years ago.
The endangered birds are nesting in the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary for the first time since 2009. Officials say storks have built about 160 nests so far at four locations in the sanctuary.
Sanctuary resource manager Mike Knight tells the News-Press (http://newspr.es/1mdSmdM ) that the number of nests may double or triple because the birds don't all start nesting at the same time.
The sanctuary once was the largest wood stork breeding colony in North America. The birds were forced to find other places to nest as their shallow wetland habitat declined.
Sanctuary officials say heavy rains during Florida's wet season helped improve conditions this year, but one good nesting season doesn't indicate a complete recovery.
Information from: The (Fort Myers, Fla.) News-Press, http://www.news-press.com