Five members of the Dubai Natural History Group carried out a rescue of a different kind in the mountains of Musandam to the north of Ras Al Khaimah.

The group, led by its chairman Gary Feulner, a Dubai-based lawyer, rescued an emaciated young mountain goat trapped in a cistern some distance away from the terraced fields and traditional mountain houses in the area.

The group was on a field trip to explore the high deserted mountain village in the Saddiyah area of Ras Al Khaimah last Friday when they encountered the unexpected challenge.

Barbara Couldrey, a Ras Al Khaimah-based member of the group, looking into a cistern some 18-feet deep, saw that trapped inside was a kid goat, still alive and apparently uninjured, although desperately weak from thirst and hunger.

"It was a pitiful sight, on the floor of the cistern were the decayed remains of another goat that must have fallen in and died," said Couldrey. The group threw part of their lunches in the cistern, including some fruit, which the baby goat frantically consumed.

Geoff Cosson, another member, told Gulf News: "The walls of the cistern were smooth and it was impossible for any of us to climb down to rescue the animal. If we had gotten down, we could not have come out."

Feulner set off on a long and exhausting trip back down to retrieve two tow ropes from his car. After almost a three-hour descent and climb back up, he arrived tired but triumphant by the cistern with the two ropes.

With a great deal of ingenuity, the group was eventually able to lower another member, Mike Lorrigan, into the cistern where he was able to catch the frail and exhausted kid and place it in a bag which was hauled to the top.

Another group member, Renata Majka, a vet at the Modern Veterinary Clinic in Dubai, was able to check the animal over and give it a welcome drink of water.