210121 deer feast
A screengrab from the deer feast video. Image Credit: YouTube

Abu Dhabi: A feast on an endangered deer caused a stir in Saudi Arabia.

A video posted on social media showing a family inviting people to eat the animal prompted the Saudi authorities to investigate the incident.

“The security authorities summoned the person who appeared in the video and questioned him. Investigation showed the deer had been bought from a special reserve, and it was raised in a farm, and not caught illegally,” sources told Sabq newspaper.

Saudi wildlife authorities ban hunting of the Arabian oryx, deer, ibex, and predators such as the Arabian tiger, lynx, wolf, hyena, and other endangered species of animals and birds, as well as birds of prey.

They also instruct that hunting can only be done with air guns licensed in the name of their users. The ministry stressed that it is forbidden to use any other means that lead to catching more than one animal or bird, whether with spray guns, fishing nets, or hunting in unauthorized ways such as using gases, car exhaust, drowning in water or using similar means, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The authorities emphasized the prohibition of hunting of all kinds of animals or birds within the boundaries of cities, villages, towns, farms and rest houses, or any inhabited places, or near cities and military, industrial and vital installations. Hunting is also banned within the peripheries of natural reserves, and giant development projects such as NEOM, the Red Sea, Amaala, Al Qiddiya, the Al-Soudah Reserve, and the Royal Commission for AlUla.

The prohibited areas also cover coasts of the Kingdom with a depth of 20km toward the mainland. Hunting of all types of falcons except Al Hurr falcon are exempted from the prohibition. The ministry prohibited hunting in the Empty Quarter. Hunting is also banned during the night or near land border areas, public roads and railways.