EPAA celebrates World Migratory Bird Day

SHARJAH, 9th May, 2018 (WAM) — Environment and Protected Areas Authority, EPAA, organised two events today in commemoration of the World Migratory Bird Day. The events’ theme was ‘Let’s Unify Our Voices to Protect Birds’ One event was held at Wasit Wetland Centre where the students at Al Al Nakheel Primary School for Girls participated in various activities centered around protection of birds. The celebrations were attended by Hana Saif Al Suwaidi, EPAA Chairman, representatives from governmental bodies and departments and a large number of visitors at Wasit Wetland Centre.

Through these celebrations, EPAA endeavours to spread awareness about the importance of preserving biodiversity and supporting global efforts that aim to preserve migratory birds, and to introduce the most important threats facing these birds during their migration.

Al Suwaidi acknowledged the efforts of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and his support to safeguard the environment, stressing that his efforts have contributed to the conservation of many species of endangered birds. She said, “Sharjah is now considered as an important home for migratory birds. Over the past years, it has been able to achieve great success in protecting migratory birds, providing them with a suitable environment by introducing various means of protecting them”.

She emphasised that the EPAA’s celebration of World Migratory Bird Day coincided with the ‘Year of Zayed’ which she stated is a good opportunity to introduce the efforts of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to preserve the environment and his interest in birds, as well as to provide an appropriate environment for their breeding.

She pointed out that Sharjah and the UAE are considered important routes for birds to migrate and breed, with more than 443 species of birds. She stressed that the prevailing environment, the warmth of the climate and the availability of food along the path of migration and in the breeding places played a vital role in making Sharjah home to a large group of birds. Sharjah aims to reduce the natural and human threats that are faced by migratory and endangered birds.

Aisha Al Medfaa, Head of Wasit Wetland Centre, said, “Sharjah has a range of islands and protected areas which represent important locations for migratory birds, including a Mangrove trees reserve, Al Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Centre and Jazirat Sir Bu Nair, all listed under the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance.

The celebration of the International Day of Migratory Birds represents a conscious effort to spread awareness about protecting migratory birds and the need to preserve the environment by shielding them from pollution so that this place remains a safe haven for them.

As an additional support for this cause EPAA launched an awareness campaign called ‘Make Them Safe’ at these two events. –At Wasit Wetland Centre, this campaign aimed to attract students as well as the general public. Wasit Wetland Centre held the Migratory Bird Exhibition, which showcased the birds’ link to the biodiversity of the centre. The activities at Kalba Bird of Prey Centre included innovative workshops for guests revealing the schedule of bird migration and comparing it with the migration season of the bird species of the centre. Another event will be held at Kalba Bird of Prey Centre this Monday 14th of May, in cooperation with the Municipality of Kalba, Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority, Sharjah Institute for Heritage, Al Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Centre and EPAA, Khorfakkan Branch.

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