AKTAU – About 100 falcons brought from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have been released into the wild in Kazakhstan.
From the airport of Aktau, the valuable cargo was delivered by cars to the Mangistau steppe. Two pairs of birds were released at each of 28 stops. Members of the delegation from the UAE with Secretary General of the Executive Board of the UAE capital Muhhammed Ahmed Al Bovardi removed from the heads of the falcons a special leather case and gave them freedom.
“In winter, falcons and gyrfalcons for a short period fly to the south skies for wintering, in particular to the UAE. But in the spring, they return to Kazakhstan for nestling. Our republic is on the migration route of these birds,” said Chairman of the Committee on Forestry and Hunting of the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources Bagdad Azbayev.
A peregrine falcon is one of the fastest birds.. Usually these birds live in areas inaccessible to people, and therefore, the Mangystau steppe is quite suitable habitat for them.
“Unfortunately, now the number of falcons in the Mangistau region is not big. A lot of poaching cases in the 1990s had a negative impact on their population. All birds released into the wild today as part of the programme to increase the population of falcons, implemented by the UAE government, are ‘equipped’ with navigators. Thereby, migrations of these birds can be monitored from the satellite,” Azbayev said.
The programme initiated by Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan has been ongoing for 20 years and has been operating in Kazakhstan for six years.
“In two days, we will release 99 falcons and 18 saker falcons will find their home in East Kazakhstan. We thank the regional administration for support of our mission,” said General Director of the International Foundation for the Conservation of Great Bustard Mohammed Sali.