The UAE is a major stop to bird migration around the world

It is no longer surprising to see or hear about the presence of rare and endangered birds in the Emirates; It is visited every year by more than 300 species of migratory birds.

According to the Emirates News Agency, WAM, during the bird migration season last summer, the Emirates recorded the first appearance of the African hawk, “Vanellus senegallus”, in the Nizwa Mountain Reserve and Dubai’s Al-Maha Desert Reserve. From the “Steppe Whimbrel” species, of which it is estimated that there are only about 100 birds worldwide, on the other hand, the Wadi Al-Wariah Reserve team in the Emirate of Fujairah documented the emergence of the “Oman owl”. “, Which has not been seen before in the country.

It is worth noting that the significant expansion of the nature reserve area played an influential role in attracting migratory birds, especially rare species, as the UAE is an annual stop on the migration route of these birds coming from Europe, Africa and Asia.

The UAE’s efforts to conserve migratory birds

On the occasion of International Migratory Birds Day, which falls on May 14, a report prepared by the Emirates News Agency presented the most prominent efforts made by the UAE to preserve global biological diversity, to protect migratory birds and to provide them with security. paradise.

The UAE hosts a large number of migratory birds each year, due to its location and the nature of its climate, in addition to the availability of bird-friendly havens, as two bird migration paths overlap, the bird migration route from East Africa in West Asia. , and the Central Asian trail, while the birds of Northern Europe and Asia visit the Emirates. As a breeding area to avoid harsh climatic conditions due to the extreme cold in the northern breeding areas, which is related to the lack of food supply, are the most prominent places and safe havens for these birds in the country.

The UAE includes dozens of important sites for migratory and endemic birds, including 11 sites classified as legal protected areas and represented by several reserves, such as: Al Wathba, Bu Al Sayayef, Ras Al Khor, mangroves and Al Hafiya . , seagulls with thin bill and others, and the most important endemic birds are: hanging, willow, Umm Tawk, gneiss, margarita, boudoir, owl, and others.

Migratory birds are divided into country land into two types: migratory visiting birds that migrate from their home country and settle in the Emirates as short-term visitors, and migratory birds passing through the Emirates skies. just to eat, drink and rest, and then continue their journey to the desired destination.

The UAE has made great efforts to preserve biological diversity and protect migratory birds. as well as combating marine pollution where the marine environment is a primary refuge for migratory birds, as well as the implementation of a series of important national programs in the framework of the national biodiversity strategy for the conservation, reproduction and release of endangered species in their natural habitats , especially hawks and bustards.

Nature Reserves

It is worth noting that the number of nature reserves in the UAE is up to 49, a number of which constitute important stations and habitats for migratory birds and are registered in the international list of wetlands of global importance under the Ramsar Convention. such as the Al Wathba Reserve in Abu Dhabi, the Ras Al Khor Reserve in Dubai and two other nature reserves. Mangroves, Al Hafiya and Sir Bu Nair Island in Sharjah. These reserves were created in the context of easing pressures on migratory birds, and ensuring the maximum degree of protection to preserve the country’s biodiversity.

Al Wathba Wetland Reserve is one of the first nature reserves in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, and is considered a haven for more than 200 species of migratory birds and home to many species, where 11 species of small mammals, 10 species of reptiles, and have been observed more than 35 species of plants.

Perhaps the most beautiful thing a visitor will see at the Al Wathba Reserve is the flamingo, especially when these migratory birds come to spend the period between autumn and spring, where up to 4000 of these birds can be seen, even when most of them return to Central Asia to spend the summer months, they stay here A group of them to inhabit this area all year round.

As for the Ras Al Khor Reserve, it hosts thousands of migratory birds each year that live temporarily on the shores of salt marshes, mud dwellings, mangroves, and swamps that are widely distributed in the reserve.

The reserve also includes hundreds of bird species and is characterized by the richness and diversity of plants and wildlife, especially for seabirds of various species and forms, including: flamingos, flamingos, wild and herons, which migrate to the Emirates starting from mild months like March and frequent in January, preferring shallow waters.

In Sharjah, migratory parasites and Umm Sannine will find them in the Sir Bu Nair Reserve, after struggling a long flight from north to south, where they take advantage of the important environmental elements contained in the reserve.

11,000 migratory species

It is worth noting that United Nations data document about 11,000 species of birds living on the planet, about one-fifth of which migrate each year between north and south.

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