The partnership between the two organisations aims at cultivating efforts to protect the UAE’s local natural flora and fauna.
The Environment Agency- Abu Dhabi (EAD) along with the National Aquarium will be working together to help animals co-exist in the UAE’s largest wildlife rehabilitation centres. Located at Al Qana, Abu Dhabi the facility will be part of a burgeoning dining, entertainment and waterfront attraction. UAE will be bringing together a team of experts in wildlife and aquatic life from 15 countries to work on the project.
In addition to annually helping several animals, the EAD will launch a specialised rescue vehicle that will be on the lookout to specifically aid animal rescue efforts and emergencies in the region. All rescued animals will be administered first-aid and then taken to the National Aquarium for thorough tests, checks care and eventual release. What’s exciting is that each animal will have a custom program that suits their needs to help with rehabilitation seamlessly. The National Aquarium will also be used a test centre especially for marine life to see how they cope in controlled environments before they are let out into the natural environment. This monitoring will also help researchers understand how they need to be helped and the impact that humans have on their way of life and habitats and accordingly steps can be taken to mitigate the negative effects.
Maitha Hameli, Specialist at Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi said: “Our efforts to monitor and protect turtles date back to 1998, thus our partnership with The National Aquarium at Al Qana, is essential for our commitment to marine conservation and care of injured marine wildlife. Our mission is to protect and preserve the marine ecosystems and the new rehabilitation facility staffed with The National Aquarium’s world-class team of experts is an important addition to reach our goal and protect species that are threatened with extinction.
“We are confident in the quality and readiness of the facilities at the rehabilitation centre. When a call came in regarding an endangered sea turtle, we conducted the rescue and carefully transported her to The National Aquarium’s rehabilitation facility for assessment.”
Just when you thought the news was over, there’s more! The new centre will also be an active hub of learning and education for children and the public. Anne Bourbon, Manager of Education & Conservation at The National Aquarium added: “At The National Aquarium, we are all committed to protecting the Arabian Gulf’s wildlife and raising awareness around broad environmental issues. Education is an essential part of the process of connecting the young and adults alike with the stories of these rescued animals.”
This is indeed an exciting project and a great step in the direction towards environment conservation through pro-active measures and community engagement to curate a holistic model that is sustainable and hopefully reap sustainable results.