Chi Lang Nam island in Hai Duong Province is also called “Stork island” thanks to its second-to-none scenery created by thousands of storks spreading their wings in the sky at dusk and dawn.
The green bamboo trees there also shelter many other types of birds, making Chi Lang Nam a peaceful, tranquil, pristine, and truly unique island.
During the glowing red of sunset, the sky is covered by flocks of storks and herons which emit loud cries against the placid surroundings of An Duong lake. The trees on Chi Lang Nam island are densely populated by 7 types of storks and 3 types of herons.
Dang Thu Ha, a tourist from Ha Noi, said: “It’s unbelievable. This is the first time I’ve seen such a huge number of storks in one place. We rowed a boat out to the middle of the lake to enjoy the stunning natural landscape.”
Legend has it that An Duong lake used to be a rice field with a hill cropping out in the middle. A cataclysm in the 15th century destroyed the dyke system around the Luoc river, turning the field into a lake and the hill into an island.
As there were more and more storks and herons coming to the island, local residents moved to the mainland, essentially making the island these birds’ “kingdom”.
Scientists consider the stork island one of the most intact natural reserves in northern Viet Nam with rich bio-diversity. The 31-hectare island is inhabited by 170 animal species, including 16,000 storks, 5,000 herons, kingfishers, and fish species.
The stork island was recognized as a national relic site in 2014. Nguyen Dang Giam, Deputy Chief of the Management Board of Chi Lang Nam Island acknowledged local people’s awareness in environmental protection.
He told VOV:“Locals have replied to our call of planting green trees and bamboo on the island. All of the people living around An Duong lake have committed to keep the lake clean. Members of the management board are in charge of bringing leaves and branches for the storks to make their nests and also for protecting those nests. Consequently, the number of birds have increased several times over. They are very friendly with humans.”
Hai Duong administrators have approved a plan to boost tourism infrastructure and biological conservation on the stork island. A rocky dyke is being built while thousands of bamboo and other trees are being planted. A 69-hectare tourist area will be upgraded to operate sight-seeing tours and local experience services.