Milky Stork

Scientific Name: Mycteria cinerea

Malay Name: Upih Bakau

Chinese Name: 白鹮鹳

Range: Breeds in Cambodia, Thailand, and western Sumatra.

Taxonomy: Monotypic.

Size: 95-100 cm

Identification: Only similar species recorded locally is Painted Stork, with which this species interbreeds extensively. Differentiated from Painted by three main traits, which must all be present in combination: a clean white breast (Painted has a black breast-band); no pink flush on the tertials, inner secondaries, and wing-coverts; and clean white upperwing-coverts (Painted has black-and-white spotting on the upperwing-coverts). Individuals which lack any of these features cannot be identified as pure Milky Storks.

Similar looking species: Painted Stork

Habitat: Mangroves, mudflats, and coasts.

Behaviour/Ecology: Gregarious, joining flocks with Painted Storks and hybrid Milky x Painted Storks.

Local Status: Common introduced resident

Conservation Status: Endangered (BirdLife International 2016)

Location: Any area of suitable habitat like Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve or Chek Jawa.


BirdLife International. (2016). Mycteria cinerea. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016. Accessed on 1 January 2023

Baveja, P., Tang, Q., Lee, J. G., & Rheindt, F. E. (2019). Impact of genomic leakage on the conservation of the endangered Milky Stork. Biological Conservation, 229, 59-66.

Robson, C. (2014). Field guide to the birds of South-East Asia (Second Edition). Bloomsbury Publishing, London.

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