The remarkable Croatian love story of two long-legged storks, Klepetan and Malena, which has gone on for the last 19 years, has come to end with news of the passing of Malena.
The love story of Klepetan and Malena captured the hearts of many in Croatia and around the world. The two storks made their nest on a chimney in Brodski Varoš in eastern Croatia 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 Klepetan would leave Croatia and make his way more than 13,000 km to the warmer climates of Africa.
Without fail, however, for 19 years in a row, Klepetan had always managed somehow to negotiate his return to Croatia in the spring when the weather warmed up to be reunited with his Malena.
Today, Malena’s caregiver for almost three decades, Stjepan Vokić, confirmed the sad news, 24sata reported.
“Yes, she passed away. The end comes for all of us. In June, when she came down from the nest, she fell. She was at my house for about ten days and then she passed away. It is just Klepetan and I now. I will still be there for him. I buried Malena in a special place,” said Stjepan, who had taken care of her for 29 years.
“That’s a big blow to me. For all of us. Klepetan and his son are always in my yard,” a solemn Vokić concluded.