The Emirati visitors look at the stuffed animals at a pavilion during the opening of Abu Dhabi International Hunting & Equestrian Exhibition at ADNEC on Wednesday. Image Credit: Abdul Rahman/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: With a wider range of products, animals and activities to explore, the 12th Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition (Adihex) opened its doors on Wednesday to adventurers across the region.

In light of the all-inclusive event, the Environment Agency — Abu Dhabi (EAD) has announced that the Al Wathba Wetland Reserve, currently a protected area, will be partially open to the public in October.

“This is the first time this has happened with the Al Wathba Protected area and we took the opportunity of our continuous participation at Adihex to make this announcement. This event attracts the community members, especially the youth, that we would like to make aware of this sort of initiative and the importance of protecting the environment,” Dr Shaikha Salem Al Daheri, Executive Director of Terrestrial and Marine Biodiversity at the EAD, told Gulf News.

Meanwhile, as falcons and dog barks greet Adihex visitors, so do state-of-the-art hunting rifles, underwater tracking devices, horse saddles and Salukis.

In addition to the usual safari vehicles and latest caravans, this year a number of boats are on display as exhibitors’ focus on marine equipment strengthens.

Running at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (Adnec), the four-day event is expected to witness over 120,000 guests including shows by the Abu Dhabi Police K-9 unit, a 10-metre-long shooting range by the Al Forsan International Sports Resort and a variety of products for purchase.

The International Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC) is once again showcasing some of the endangered birds who are free to roam around the two-storey stand at the exhibition. The IFHC is educating the public on the Houbara bustard and the ethical methods of hunting them.

This year, weapon collectors have a chance to attain rare hand-made knives by the local company Tamreen Sports, which is displaying items handcrafted specially for the event.