19 March 2019 – The remarkable love story of two long-legged birds from eastern Croatia, which has gone on for the last 17 years, continues as Klepetan arrived back home to his love Malena earlier than expected on Monday.
Klepetan, who usually arrives back from Africa to Malena between 24 – 28 March, arrived home yesterday, over a week early to Brodski Varos.
Stjepan Vokic, who has taken care of the birds in Brodski Varos for over a decade, told 24sata that he noticed that Klepetan had returned yesterday around 3 pm.
“I was in the yard and I noticed two storks behind the school on the grass. I called out, ‘Klepo, come, dida Stipe will give you fish and meat’,” said Stjepan, adding that after finishing off the food Klepetan took his position on the roof and ‘kissed Malena’. “They are happy, and so am I,” he added.
The love story of storks Klepetan and Malena has captured the hearts of many in Croatia for 17 years now. The two storks made their nest on a chimney in Brodski Varos more than two decades ago. The pair would fly together until poachers injured Malena’s wing which left her flying capabilities restricted.
With storks being a migrating bird, this caused a problem. Every winter for the last 17 years Klepetan would leave Croatia and make his way more than 13,000 km to the warmer climates of Africa. Without fail, however, Klepetan has always managed somehow to negotiate his return to Croatia in the spring when the weather warms up to be reunited with Malena.
The famous love story continues.