|Title||Yesan-gun, successfully frees 8 storks into the wild to restore stork population on the Korean peninsula|
Yesan-gun, successfully frees 8 storks into the wild to restore stork population on the Korean peninsula
- The result of efforts made by the residents engaging in eco-friendly farming, Korea National University of Education, and LG Evergreen Foundation, etc. –
- Mayor Hwang Seon-bong, requests inclusion of the historical moment in textbooks -
In Yesan-gun, one of the two places in Korea with a monument marking the breeding ground for storks, the natural monument birds were seen flying freely across the sky. According to the county officials, the storks were released into the wild at Hwangsae Park on September 3, as a result of the Stork Population Restoration Project imitated in 2009.
This historical moment was observed by some 3,000 people including Hwang Seon-bong, the Mayor of Yesan, National Assemblyman Hong Moon-pyo, Yoon Seong-kyu, the Minister of Environment, Cultural Heritage Administrator Rha Sun-hwa, Muneharu Nakagai, the Mayor of Toyooka, as well as other heads of government agencies, local residents and visitors.
At the event, 6 adult storks and 2 juvenile storks were returned to the wild. While 6 birds were released from cages, the other 2 birds were released by opening the rooftop of the step-by-step release center where they had been fostered.
GPS location tracking devices have been attached to the storks to gather data on their traveling routes and other factors, and the collected data will be used in ecological research.
Yesan has been spurring efforts to restore the stork population with Korea National University of Education since it was selected as the target area for the Stork Village Creation Project by the Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea in 2009.
By executing a project budget of approximately KRW 19 billion from 2010 to 2014, Yesan established the Hwangsae Park on a 135,669㎡ lot in Dae-ri, Gwangsi-myeon, with the wild flower training center, ecological wetlands, open center, cultural center and other facilities. At present, 74 storks are being reared at the park, including the 60 storks transferred from Korea National University of Education in June last year and 14 baby birds which were successfully bred this year.
The park has become a tourist attraction, welcoming some 20,000 tourists since its opening on June 9 last year. The park operators have been offering a wide range of programs to help the visitors learn more about and feel closer to the birds, which has contributed to the park’s growing popularity.
Mayor Hwang stated, “I’d like to extend my gratitude to our residents and the project implementers, who made efforts based on the belief that humans and storks can coexist in the same environment, as well as those who are present at today’s event. Storks are like gifts to our county and they are valuable ecological resources for the future. I hope you all show your support and envision a day when we can see storks in the natural environment in Yesan, a home to storks.”
He also added, “We will aggressively discuss the matter with the relevant government agencies so that this historical moment can be recorded in the state-issued textbooks to be made known to our future generations.”