Help for stray gazelle

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Help for stray gazelle

Help has finally arrived for the Arabian mountain gazelle that was seen wandering on the premises of a lubricant factory in Mohammed bin Zayed City here.


Olivia Olarte-Ulherr

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Published: Thu 23 Aug 2012, 8:39 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 1:03 PM

A team from the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD), which responded to Khaleej Times’ call through the Abu Dhabi Government Contact Centre, visited the site on Wednesday to assess the situation.

“As the environmental regulator in Abu Dhabi, one of our priorities is to protect and conserve our terrestrial biodiversity. On the same day of receiving the report, two experts from our Terrestrial and Marine Biodiversity Sector visited the area, assessed the situation and have devised a ‘capture’ plan to bring the Arabian mountain gazelle in question to safety,” said a statement from the EAD.

The plan will be implemented today. Established in 1996, the EAD was tasked to preserve Abu Dhabi’s natural heritage, raise awareness about environmental issues, and protect and conserve wildlife and natural resources, including endangered species such as the Arabian mountain gazelle.

Once captured, the gazelle will be taken to one of the EAD’s wildlife facilities and will be provided with the necessary feed and veterinary care, added the statement.

According to the EAD, a similar incident was reported to the agency a few months ago whereby an Arabian gazelle strayed on the highway in Khalifa City A. In coordination with the Abu Dhabi Police, the animal was captured within two hours, from the time the agency was notified. That gazelle is currently at the EAD’s Al Faya facility.

Animal lover relieved

The gazelle in Mohammed bin Zayed City near Mazyad Mall was first spotted on Friday night by Mohammed Tasleem, an employee of Top Lube, grazing the small patch of grass in front of the factory. It is possible that the animal was kept as a pet in one of the large villas in the area and may have escaped. Tasleem, who has been keeping a vigilant eye on the gazelle in the past five days, was glad to be finally relieved of the task.

“I am not sleeping. I am checking all the time to make sure it is still there (at the thicket where it was resting),” said Tasleem.

Since the sighting, some labourers in the area have been devising ways to capture the gazelle for its meat. A pack of wild dogs were also seen stalking the animal.

The Arabian mountain gazelle (locally known as Al Dhabi) is endemic to the Arabian Peninsula, and the mountainous and gravel plain areas of the UAE.

They were once common in these areas, but due to hunting and urbanisation, their population has declined.

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