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28 February 2024

Report: Eagles help preserve environment

By Wam

The world’s countries celebrate the annual "World Day of Awareness about Eagles" on the first Saturday of September, in a bid to highlight the risks these birds face.

Many international organisations with an interest in preserving wildlife organised awareness programmes that highlighted the role of eagles in maintaining the environmental system.

Eagles scavenge 70 percent of carcasses, which prevents the spread of diseases among humans and animals.

To save the Egyptian eagle from extinction, whose numbers have increased globally but have decreased by 90 percent in India over the ten past years, the "Environment and Protected Areas Authority" in Sharjah was successful in its first attempt to breed the Egyptian Eagle in the UAE at the "Kalbaa Centre for Birds of Prey." The breeding programme, which started at the centre in 2016, involved six wild birds, with three males and three females, and in 2017 the centre was successful in its second breeding programme.

The Dubai Municipality rescued an eagle, named "Curly Head," through a programme launched by the Environment Department in the protected Al Marmoum Desert. A satellite tracking device was attached to the eagle, which tracked his migration to Oman, after years of solitude and the threat of extinction.

Some 20 to 25 eagles are spotted every year in the Al Marmoum Desert, especially in its southern and western areas.

The Emirates Wildlife Association is also monitoring the presence of the Arabian Eagle Owl, which is a sub-species of the Spotted Eagle Owl (Popo Africanus), which are not thought to inhabit the UAE. The owls were discovered during a research study conducted by a team from the programme, which aims to preserve local wildlife. The owls usually inhabit areas of Dhaffar in Oman, as well as Yemen and the Asseer Mountains in Saudi Arabia on the coast of the Red Sea.