Sudanese Bird Watchers Club, Recreation and Knowledge Window

Khartoum – Watching the migration of birds is one of the best tourist attractions. Bird hunting and photography are also fascinating tourist pastimes.

Sudan is considered a great bird garden, host to countless varieties and species of birds. However, according to Wikipedia, the birdlife of Sudan comprises a total of 634 species.

The birds of Sudan have always been part of the country’s heritage, a source of inspiration for poets and artists.

Almost all Sudanese here have been and continue to be moved by Salah Ahmed Ibrahim’s poem “Migrating Birds”, performed by the late great artist Mohammad Wardi, and has continued to be sung or broadcast for decades.

The song Rahaw Birds (Anthropoides virgo), performed by the late artist Hamad Alrayyah, has also captivated souls for generations.

Several other songs, describing (and glorifying) different types of birds and equating loved ones to them, are also part of the country’s artistic heritage. We have songs for birds: albaloam (paloma colombe), altair alkudari (abyssinian roll), bulbul, alhamam (pigeon) etc … etc.

This craze for birds could also be the reason why Sudan chose the Jidyan falcon (secretary-bird) as the country’s official emblem.

This great status of birds in Sudanese life, added to the great avian wealth of the country, can constitute a great tourist and economic potential.

The growing craze for birds prompted a group of young men and women to start a birding club as the first such organization in the country.

To get a glimpse of this wonderful initiative, Sudanow spoke with the club president, Mr. Mohammad Abdelhafeez, who said: The Birds Watchers Club is an organization that deals with the protection of birds and the promotion of bird watching facilities. It was also concerned with the conservation of bird habitat

The club was launched and officially registered with the National Council for Culture and the Arts in 2016 as the first specialized club of its kind in Sudan.

Mr. Mohammad Abdelhafeez

The idea emerged to a group of young people after seeing similar clubs in some countries.

Due to the desire of these young people to copy these experiences, given the vast potential of birds from Sudan, these young people started the experiment.

The group, made up of wildlife and bird lovers, includes: Mohammad Abelhafeez, Marwa Alhaj, Awad Siddiq, Hind Mekki, Alfatih Ibrahim and Mubarak Mohammad.

The Club also welcomes researchers of different specializations, professionals and amateurs.

Organizations related to the study of birds, animals and wildlife and press men were also rallied, always keeping in mind the vast biodiversity of Sudan.

Mr Mohammad also said their main concern was birds, raising them, protecting them and protecting them from poaching.

The idea is also to promote the means of observing birds, the conservation of their environment and awareness of the need to protect birds and to encourage young people and amateurs to take a break in front of the beauty of the world of birds. and attract tourists to see Sudan’s rich birdlife and encourage researchers to study them.

Studies are also aimed at protecting birds and contributing to the documentation of the natural history of Sudan and its game reserves.

The objective is also to encourage the launching of zoos in the various cities of Sudan through the initiation of regional branch committees of the Club.

The Club is also keen to forge links with regional and international bodies active in this field. In this, he has a lot of domestic and foreign participation in related events.

Through its specialized memberships, the Club monitors the annual migration of birds to and from Sudan.

It also celebrates World Migratory Bird Day, May 14, and is strictly committed to global bird migration charters and agreements.

This is in line with Sudan’s committed memberships to relevant international organizations. In this, the Club is also a signatory of the

Ramsar Convention on the Conservation of Earth and Wetlands.

The Club plays a big role in spreading awareness on the need to control agricultural pests and to explain the role of birds in pest control. For this, it has concluded an agreement with the Ministry of Agriculture. A memorandum of understanding has been signed with the Ministry of Energy to maintain the safety of migratory birds when crossing high-voltage power lines and another with the aviation authorities to avoid collisions between birds and planes.

The Club launches exhibitions and publishes educational bulletins on the life and conservation of birds. It also organizes field trips to see and count birds, with the aim of alleviating bird shortages in some areas and avoiding environmental deficiencies in those places, keeping in mind that birds are among the most crucial elements of ecological balance.

All this is done under the Club’s motto: No to poaching, No to deforestation. The second slogan is that forests are the natural habitats of birds which, if destroyed, will cease to exist.

Part of the Club’s activity is its current engagement in holding training courses and workshops and conducting field trips to familiarize themselves with the birds available, how they can be counted and watched and also to see their gathering places in forests and valleys, their migratory routes and to conduct research to know endangered species in order to protect them.

Mr. Mohammad also says that birds contribute a lot to the economies of many countries.

Individuals also benefit a lot from the production of poultry: chickens, geese and ducks. The same goes for raising quails for their meat.

Some Sudanese bird species produce excellent types of feathers and eggs which are used as ornaments and decorations, like those of ostriches.

Birds, with their bright colors and pleasant song, are a good source of recreation for some.

Some birds are considered an auspicious sign in Sudan, while others are seen as a bad omen.

For example, farmers in Sudan feel happy when they see local fishing birds and consider them a sign of a heavy rainy season.

On the other hand, owls are hated because they are seen as a sign of impending evil.

Migratory birds arriving from Europe cross Sudan through the Strait of Gibraltar. They are sea birds whose food depends on fish.

The second type of migratory birds are birds that enter Sudan from Northwest Africa through the Sahara and feed on reptiles, mice and rabbits.

These birds migrating to Sudan are looking for warmth and to lay their eggs. In summer and after the eggs hatch, the birds fly to Europe, with their Sudanese naturalized babies!

Bird photography is a major concern of the Club. It’s a sticky process because birds are, in general, very sensitive to humans.

It requires the photographer to have enough knowledge about the life and habits of birds and he must also have enough tactics to take the photo, because the photo he takes becomes the story for sure.

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