[Dubai, UAE - 3 October 2022] Levant Operation for Bird Rescue (LOBR)—a joint project by IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare) and LAMB (Lebanese Association for Migratory Birds)—works to rescue birds and alleviate their suffering from injuries caused by attempted killings. The project aims to rehabilitate the birds and release them back to the wild.
This Saturday, 1 October 2022, LOBR opened its doors to the public to attend the release of three recovered birds in Ehden Nature Reserve. After receiving the necessary treatment and care for injuries they sustained from illegal hunting, the birds now have a second chance at life in the wild.
“To ensure the safety of the birds when released, we chose a high location on Ehden Mountain where hunters cannot spot or shoot them, so the birds can follow the migration route along the flyway towards safety,” says Dr. Michel Sawan, President of LAMB. He adds, “It brings us great pride and joy to be able to release these birds following their recovery from injuries that at first seemed impossible to treat or heal, and to see that there is always hope for change even during the difficult times our beloved country is going through.”
Dr. Elsayed Mohamed, IFAW’s Middle East and North Africa Regional Director says, “People must know that an individual act ultimately plays a collective role in a community. Bird hunting in Lebanon is a detrimental cultural practice that continues to be passed down to the younger generations with no regard to sustainability or conservation.” He continues, “We must work together to change behaviours and mindsets. We must not accept animal cruelty and unsustainable hunting, especially now during the autumn migration and after the breeding season from 15 September to 31 January.”
In Lebanon, several sites have been identified as important migratory corridors that are used by most of the 408 bird species recorded in Lebanon. Many of these species, including eagles, vultures, falcons, passerines, storks and cranes, require protection from illegal and random shooting as their populations continue to decline and they become listed as endangered.
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