Posted on September 28, 2018

The Ministry of Municipality and Environment's Department of Protection and Wildlife on Thursday said that its strategy is laser-focused on protecting endangered species.

This came during a press conference where the department's officials discussed a hawksbill sea turtle project, one of the endangered species in the state. The officials stressed that their efforts will focus on monitoring rare and endangered species in order to protect them.

They noted that the International Union for Conservation of Nature enlisted these species as endangered in 1982. Director of the department Omar Salem al Nuaimi said that the ministry is committed to protecting the hawksbill sea turtle as reflected by the project done in cooperation with Qatar Petroleum and Qatar University. The project, which was started in 2003, aims to protect the species found on the countries Northern shores (Ras Laffan, Al Morouna, Fuwayrit, Al Ghayriya) as well as islands such as Umm Al Tais and Haloul. The goal of the project is to determine the location of the animals and to transport their eggs to safe locations. This will help monitoring the hatching process before returning the newly-born turtles to the sea.

Nuaimi discussed the progress of this year's work, which involved choosing highly-skilled Qatari environmental observers to carry out the fieldwork. Work this year also involved holding a number of training workshops for the team by specialists from the department. He noted that those in charge recommended some sort of protection during the nesting season, and highlighted the ministerial decision on preserving sea turtles and birds from extinction. It is based on this law that the Fuwayrit beach was closed from April till the end of July.

There are also patrols that monitor the other beaches in case they also become a home for turtles' nesting.