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Israel is home to the resident Asian Houbara, mainly observed in the Negev desert. Image Credit: Courtesy International Fund For Houbara Conservation

Abu Dhabi: The International Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC) based in Abu Dhabi and Israel Nature & Heritage Foundation (INHF) have recently signed a five-year agreement to collaborate on the conservation of Houbara bustard and other rare and threatened bird species in Israel.

“This is a momentous accord for IFHC, allowing us to cooperate with experts in a country that is an intercontinental bird migration junction and where great conservation efforts are being undertaken,” said Majid Ali Al Mansouri, managing director of IFHC.

Israel is home to the resident Asian Houbara, mainly observed in the Negev desert. The agreement will involve field studies and research aimed at preserving the Houbara population and its habitat in the region. Such studies will include monitoring wild populations to assess survival, dispersal and breeding success. Conservation measures will be explored by both parties.

Joint conservation efforts

“INHF will benefit from IFHC’s substantial knowledge on the biology, behaviour and population dynamics of the Houbara bustard and other vulnerable species and its expertise in the restoration and preservation of habitats and ecosystems,” noted INHF’s Major General Vilnai, adding: “We will now together prepare and implement programmes for effective Houbara conservation within our country.”

The conservation agreement was signed following the normalisation of relations between the UAE and Israel with signing of the Abraham Accords Agreement back in August 2020.