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focus February 2003

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Editorial

This month you will notice the newsletter carries advance warning of the forthcoming inter-emirates weekend. For those of you who don't know already, "inter-emirates" is when the UAE's three Natural History Groups get together for a social event and more. This year it is the turn of the Dubai NHG to host the event and chosen venue is Khor Fakkan.

Accommodation will be in the Oceanic Hotel from where a variety of excursions will go out. If you are interested in coming along then read the information supplied by Val Chalmers of DNHG and act accordingly. Do so quickly too - March isn't that far away. It is always a lot of fun so we hope to see a good turn out from Abu Dhabi there.

And don't forget, Focus is the group's newsletter and awaits your contributions, or, if not that, then at least your suggestions as to what you want to see in it. And if anybody says shorter or no editorial at all then I'd like to see them outside.

Simon Aspinall,
Chairman

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Sheikh Mubarak and Bish Brown Awards, 2002.

The committee is pleased to announce the winners of this year's Sheikh Mubarak and Bish Brown Awards: Phil Iddison from the Al Ain NHG is to receive the Sheikh Mubarak Award, while Brien Holmes, Chairman of the Al Ain NHG, is to collect the Bish Brown Award.

Congratulations to both for the well-deserved recognition of their efforts, and, I suppose, also to the Al Ain NHG for a clean sweep this year!

The Sheikh Mubarak Award is given annually to the person who has made a substantial, original, scientific contribution to the knowledge of the history, natural history, culture, archaeology or palaeontology of the UAE. The Bish Brown Award is given to the person who has made a significant contribution to promoting wider interest in the broad objectives of the three natural history groups, in the dissemination of information and awareness and in playing a leading role in the activities of the groups.

Phil is an accomplished photographer and has published and lectured extensively on a variety of subjects, food and food technology being his favourites, but history, folklore and architecture also get a look in from time to time. He returned to the UK, but probably only temporarily, at the end of last year. He is undoubtedly a worthy winner. Congratulations to him.

Brien is a well-known resident of Al Ain. He works tirelessly and unassumingly on behalf of the Al Ain NHG, and is largely responsible for filling up the group's website with a wealth of topical natural history articles, including all of the original Emirates Natural History Bulletins still in circulation. Congratulations also to him from the ENHG.

The date of the presentation ceremony will, hopefully, be fixed and announced in time for the next issue of Focus. We can also look forward to hearing at least one and possibly both of the winners speak at a forthcoming evening meeting of the Group.

Simon Aspinall

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Inter-Emirates Weekend: Thurs / Fri 20th-21st March

Each year in March/April the three Natural History Groups of the UAE - Emirates Natural History Group Abu Dhabi, Emirates Natural History Group Al Ain and the Dubai Natural History Group get together for an interesting yet social weekend involving a dinner and various activities and trips. It is a chance to meet up with people/old friends from the other groups. The event is organised annually by one of the groups in rotation. This year, it is the turn of the Dubai Natural History Group.

Details for the weekend are still being worked out. However, we are pleased to announce that we will be based at the Oceanic Hotel, Khor Fakkan and events will begin on Thursday afternoon. The hotel is block booking a number of rooms for the weekend on a first come first served basis and you are encouraged to book early.

Hotel rates per night are:

  • Double Room/Twin Room Dh305/- inclusive of tax and Dh385/- inclusive of tax and full breakfast.
  • Single Room Dh245/- inclusive of tax and Dh 285/- inclusive of tax and full breakfast.
  • Children below 12 years may stay free.
  • Evening buffet Dh85/- inclusive of tax
  • Lunch Box Dh46/- (inc. soft drinks)

Telephone The Oceanic Hotel on 09-2385111 to make a reservation. You need to mention Dubai Natural History Group - Inter-Emirates Weekend when you make your booking in order to get the rates quoted. Lamjed El Kefi who is the DNHG Astronomy and Marine Life Recorder runs Al Marsa T and T which specialises in Musandam Dhow Trips which operate from Dibba Port. (No visas are required but some form of identification such as driving licence or photocopy of passport should be with you). Members of the DNHG have gone on both day trips and weekend cruises on Lamjed's dhows. These are superb and everybody has returned full of praise for them. Lamjed has offered to run another full day cruise to Haffa and Lima Bay which will include snorkelling on Friday 21st and he is keeping the date free for us.

Details are as follows:

  • Meet in Dibba Port (AL MINA) Oman at about 8 a.m. for registration and embark at about 8.30 to 9 a.m.
  • Price for Day Cruise per person less group discount
  • Minimum Group 20 persons: Maximum 40 persons. Children open.
  • Price net: Dh235/- per adult. Children under 12 years at 50%: Dh115/-. Children 3 years and under free.
  • Day Cruise to Haffa and Lima Bay includes Breakfast, Hot Lunch, Coffee/Tea, soft drinks and water from dispenser.
  • Bring Hat, sunblock and swim gear.
  • Beverages to suit all tastes will be available on board at extra cost, plus equipment as below:
  • Mask Dh20/- per day
  • Fins Dh20/- per day Or Snorkelling Set Dh35/- per day. A deposit of Dh1 20/- will be required to secure your place on the trip.

Lamjed has offered to run for those people who cannot manage a full day trip a short trip to Haffa which will last about 3 or 4 hours at a cost of Dh100/- for adults and Dh50/- for children over 3 under 12 years. No food will be included but tea and coffee and water will be available. This trip could be run on the afternoon of Thursday 20th March (from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.) or on the morning of Friday 21st or afternoon of Friday 21st. Again Minimum of 20 people and Maximum of 40 people. Again a deposit of Dh50/- will be required to secure your place on the trip.

In addition to the dhow trips, we will be arranging visits to the Fujairah Fort/Museum and the Heritage Village, shelling and snorkelling trips, birding at Khor Kalba, wadi trips, interesting routes and drives back to Dubai/Al Ain/ Abu Dhabi via Kalba and Hatta or Dibba and RAK to name but a few.

On Thursday evening there will be a buffet dinner plus an entertaining quiz with prizes amongst other things. Further details will be given at meetings and in the next Gazelle.

Valerie Chalmers

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Atlas of Breeding Birds of Arabia, ABBA, project

The ABBA Newsletter Phoenix 19, has been printed and is being despatched. As usual a batch will be sent to the ENHG, which will distribute them to local birders locally in the UAE. Those who subscribe personally will receive their own copy in the post. Those not subscribing please contact a committee member, so that a copy can be reserved for you. No 19 (dated January 2003; 24 pages) , has a range of articles as in previous issues, including recent reports, sites of interest, new breeding species for the whole of Arabia and new species breeding in individual states for the first time. There are detailed reports on the exciting breeding birds discovered on the Bubiyan islands off Kuwait (first survey there for 80 years!!) and the Yemen islands in the middle of the Red Sea which have never previously been visited. This issue includes colour photos for the first time.

ABBA is moving forward into its final stage but records are still being added to the database and observers are asked to continue to send in records especially of confirmed breeding, no matter how common the species, and any data about the rarer species. Detailed information of breeding is still urgently required and events such as nest building, food carrying, begging juveniles, etc should be reported. The breeding seasons of so many Arabian species are still poorly known and basic information on what food is taken is also very scant. Do not forget that all ABBA reports should be copied to your local Bird Recorder. The revamped ABBA website will be launched in the spring at http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/arabian.birds/ This will include a full set of instructions and forms for the use of contributors and a lot of other data. (The old site will still be showing in the meantime - but do not let it put you off!)

Even after publication of the final Atlas, the ABBA database will be kept up to date as a tool for the use of anyone interested in Arabian birds. Contributors, and anyone else for that matter, can be given a listing of all the birds in their local square with the breeding status so far achieved, or all records for a species can be provided for someone writing an article for Tribulus or Sandgrouse etc.

Phoenix 20 is being put together and articles on breeding species or habitats are invited - and don't forget appropriate colour photos for the next issue.

Mike Jennings

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The Hanging Gardens in February

February and March are the best months for a visit to Jebel Qatar, otherwise known amongst the Anglophone community as the "Hanging Gardens". There are more frequent showers in the winter months and the low temperatures encourage growth of many plants that are hoping to produce seeds that will germinate with the support of the rains. This is a name given to the area by Marijcke Jongbloed who was impressed by the vines hanging from the cliff face (Cocculus pendulus). Generations of botanists, naturalists, alpinists and others have made their way up to the base of the cliff and beyond for the superb view of the sands of the UAE and the plains and mountains of Oman that can be enjoyed from the top. Access from Al Ain (for residents of Abu Dhabi) is via Buraimi. You take the third exit at the first roundabout immediately after the Buraimi Hotel and drive for approximately 16 kms towards Mahdhah. There are a couple of tracks leading to the bottom of the mountain to your right. By this time visitors will have noticed that the terrain has changed from UAE sand into a gravel plain dotted with samr (Acacia tortilis), ghaf (Prosopis cineraria),and a few sarh (Maerua crassifolia).

There is an abundant floral, faunal and avian wildlife in the area, which is as yet untouched by the potentially destructive hand of development. For Abu Dhabi residents, it can be recommended for a variety of reasons, not least of which is its relative proximity to the UAE capital. For geologists, too, there are fossils and a variety of rock types. At the foot of Jebel Qatar there are two small wadi ecosystems at either end of the cliff. Here water permeates through the rocks and provides a home to the Arabian toad (Bufo arabicus), and a number of aquatic species, attracting various types of damsel flies and other insects. Bird-watchers will find at least 20 species, with at least four possible raptors, according to Aspinall and Richardson (1998). When the first salam (Acacia ehrenbergiana) comes into bloom in March/April butterflies, beetles, and cicadas are attracted in large numbers. There are foxes and other larger animals, including rodents in the mountains and on the plain below. This adds up to a varied natural habitat within a few square kilometres.

The main attraction, apart from the site itself, is the varied plant life. There are at least five different habitats for plants: montane, submontane, alluvial plains, gravel plains and sand sheets.

I shall mention five plants which habitually prefer one or other of these habitats. As you come off the main road you will see a number of Sodom's Apple bushes (Calotropis procera). They grow to about 5 metres in the region, and have the most beautiful star-like pink flowers. This is the breeding ground for the Plain Tiger butterfly, but because of its bitter latex sap, no grazing or browsing animal will eat it, and so it flourishes. In the past local people used the woody stems to produce charcoal for gunpowder. The place to see a forest of these bushes in the UAE is in Wadi Faya. We can only hope that the present development in that area will not have a negative effect on these magnificent bushes. If you examine the leaves of the Sodom's Apple, you may see either the eggs of the Plain Tiger, or a caterpillar devouring the leaves. This plant is usually found in sandy locations, although it does survive well in urban Dubai, much to the annoyance of the Municipality who tried to eradicate it at one stage.

A plant characteristic of alluvial plains and water courses (wadis) is 'dhafra' (Tephrosia apollinea). It is a woody perennial with purple pea-like flowers. It is rarely found beyond the flow of the water course, and is found in sand, among stones on gravel wherever the water has passed. Along the water courses of the Hanging Gardens you can quite large clumps of dhafra, up to 70cms. They can be recognized by their oblong leaves, their dense foliage and their straight seed pods that grow to 6cm.

From the lower mountain slopes to the summit, and extending on to the submontane gravel plains below, you will find numbers of apparently dead, tightly closed buds. They are brown in colour and stand up to approx. 5 cms. These are the seed pods of the hygroscopic plant Asteriscus pygmaeus. If you pour a little water on them they will open out within a few minutes. They have five woody petals and five large sepals around a centre of dried seeds. Unless there is sufficient ambient humidity in the atmosphere to encourage the plant to germinate, they will close up again. The flowers of this dwarf star are daisy-like, bright yellow and with a basal rosette. You will find them all the way up the mountain, including the plateau at the summit.

A denizen of the gravel plains, and of Mina Zayed Abu Dhabi!, is the ra' bush or Aerva javanica. In the past the woolly seeds were used to stuff cushions and camel seats. The young flower is pinkish, and the plant will grow to about a metre in favorable conditions. There is a "field" of these plants just below the cliff of Jebel Qatar, approximately half-way between the two waterfalls. They are cohabiting with a colony of the woody shrub Abutilon pannosum. This plant of disturbed ground grows to 1.5 m and has a very showy yellow flower. The site it has chosen on the mountain is an abandoned garden.

Finally, on the lower slopes of the mountain you will occasionally come across a plant that is reputedly poisonous. It is Hyoscyamus muticus, or Egyptian henbane, having fleshy leaves, a basal rosette and an impressive purple bloom, which might be mistaken for an orchid. This is found hiding among the rocks. Here is one of the most attractive plants of the Hanging Gardens. There is a lily that is ubiquitous in this area, which can also claim to be the floral star of the show :Dipcadi biflorum. The Dipcadi lily has two brown flowers which come out at dusk.

There is a wide variety of plants in the area known as the Hanging Gardens, as it provides a wide variety of undisturbed habitats. Before you go there, I recommend you read The Green Guide to the Emirates (Marycke Jongbloed, new edition 1998) which is still available in some of the local bookshops. Rahala saida!

Allestree Fisher

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TWITCH IT! - Report for January 2003

The New Year for Abu Dhabi birders got off to a cracking start. On 1st January a mistle thrush (c.13th record) was found in the gardens of the Mercure Grand Hotel on Jebel Hafit, along with 4 desert larks, 2 Hume's wheatears, a chiffchaff and a couple of house buntings. At its foot, in the Wadi Mubazzarah stream and surroundings trees were a green and a wood sandpiper and a black redstart as well as 3+ yellow-vented bulbuls, becoming more difficult to find these days.

On 2nd January, a grey wagtail, a citrine wagtail, a male ring ouzel, 3 desert lesser whitethroats, 6 chiffchaffs and a masked shrike were in Mushrif Palace Gardens. The mistle thrush was seen again on Jebel Hafit, along with a male ring ouzel, a female black-throated thrush, another immature showing mixed characteristics of black-throated and red-throated thrush, (like black-throated but with red sides to the tail), 3 blue rock thrushes, a pair of hooded wheatears, 5 Hume's and 3 red-tailed wheatears.

On 3rd January, a grey hypocolius, 8 song thrushes, 6 desert lesser whitethroats, 2 plain leaf warblers and a Southern grey shrike were at Ghantut. 5 Egyptian vultures, a black redstart, and a desert lesser whitethroat were new on Jebel Hafit.

Also on 3rd January, 90 cattle egrets were at the Eastern Lagoon roost, along with a glossy ibis and a purple heron and a circling flock of 120 Indian house crows. The Golf & Equestrian Club produced yet another ring ouzel, a steppe grey shrike and 10 pintail. A juvenile night heron was found in palms at Khalidiya. The Mushrif Palace Gardens ring ouzel was still present (until at least the 5th).

On 4th January, a wryneck, a grey wagtail and a red-breasted flycatcher were in Mushrif Palace Gardens. Another ring ouzel (male) and a male black-throated thrush were at the Mubazzarah springs and stream at the bottom of Jebel Hafit.

On 9th January, the Al Wathba Camel Track had five greylag geese,3 cattle egrets, 6 marsh, one Montagu's and 2 pallid harriers, 2 quail, 44 Pacific golden plovers, 6 red-wattled plovers, a barn owl, 23 Egyptian nightjars, (a site record), 16 bimaculated larks, 55 short-toed larks, c75 skylarks, 11 Richard's, 2 Blyth's, c 90 tawny, 2 tree, a meadow and c 75 water pipits, 19 bluethroats, 3 Siberian stonechats and an 'ordinary' stonechat, 18 isabelline and 22 desert wheatears, 3 steppe grey and 2 Southern grey shrikes, 10 isabelline shrikes and a corn bunting.

On 10th January, 3 crested honey buzzards were on the Manhal radio mast in Abu Dhabi. The 75+ ducks at the Eastern Lagoon were all to be mallard, (mainly feral?). A pair of osprey, with young, were on Futaisi island.

On 11th January a marsh harrier was in Mushrif Palace Gardens, along with 2 tree pipits, (until at least 13th January).

On 12th January, a goldfinch was singing in Mushrif Palace Gardens, in the same tree as the bird last autumn and winter. Also present there were 2 tree pipits, a masked shrike and a red-breasted flycatcher.

On 13th January, a wryneck was by Spinney's, Khalidiya.

On 14th January, a short-toed eagle was on the Shahama-Mafraq road.

On 17th January, a visit to the Al Wathba Camel Track found 3 cattle egrets, a pallid harrier, 3 marsh harriers, a long-legged buzzard, 68 Pacific golden plovers, 7 red-wattled plovers, 250 chestnut-bellied sandgrouse, 25 skylarks, 30 short-toed larsk, 2 Richard's pipits, a Blyth's pipit, 75 tawny pipits, 6 red-throated pipits, 18 water pipits, 5 yellow wagtails, a bluethroat, a Siberian stonechat, 17 isabelline wheatears, 12 desert wheatears, 4 isabelline shrike and 2 Southern grey shrike.

On 18th January, 2 tree pipits and the goldfinch (in full song and looking very healthy) were at Mushrif Palace Gardens.

On 20th January, 2 crested honey buzzards were over Manhal Palace. Another was turned in during the week to Abu Dhabi's falcon hospital having been picked up exhausted in the desert by a falconer. Fed and watered, it swiftly recovered and has been released.

On 23rd January, a quiet afternoon at Al Wathba Camel track produced only 3 marsh harriers, a pallid harrier, a kestrel, 30 Pacific golden plovers, 2 red-wattled plovers, 2 ruff, a curlew, 28 tawny pipits, 8 white wagtails, 35 short toed larks, 6 isabelline wheatear, 20 desert wheatears, a steppe grey shrike, 3 Southern grey shrike, 2 isabelline shrike and, late, an Egyptian nightjar.

On 25th January, a spotted eagle was over the Western Lagoon.

On 26th January, a visit to the Mushrif Palace Gardens found 8 cattle egrets, a marsh harrier, 4 common sandpipers, 2 tree pipits, 2 citrine wagtails, a song thrush, 4 chiffchaffs, 3 isabelline shrike and the wintering masked shrike. 6 meadow pipits, 4 water pipits and a desert wheatear were at the nearby Health and Fitness Club.

On 28th January, Mushrif Palace Gardens had a night heron, 4 common sandpipers, 2 tree pipits, 2 citrine wagtails, 6 chiffchaffs, a olivaceous warbler, a red-breasted flycatcher, the long-staying goldfinch and 2 isabelline shrike. 6 pintail, a teal, 7 meadow pipits, 2 water pipit, an isabelline shrike and a steppe grey shrike were at the Health and Fitness Club, while a honey buzzard and the three crested honey buzzards were at Manhal Palace. A pallid harrier was flying south (inland) over the Marina Mall. In the afternoon of the 28th, a visit to the Al Wathba Camel Track found the first Sykes's nightjar of the spring, along with 18 Egyptian nightjars, just after dusk. Afternoon birds included 3 marsh harriers, a pallid harrier, 28 Pacific golden plovers, a Richard's pipit, 65 tawny pipits, a long-billed pipit, 3 meadow pipits, 8 red-throated pipits, a common stonechat, 8 isabelline wheatears, 7 desert wheatears, 2 isabelline shrike and 2 Southern grey shrike.

On 30th January, another trip to the Al Wathba Camel Track, during an afternoon with persistent rain, found 3 marsh harriers, a kestrel, 63 Pacific golden plovers, a little stint, a Temminck's stint, 3 curlew, 35 bimaculated larks, 18 skylarks, 35 tawny.

On 31st January, 2 citrine wagtails, 2 olivaceous warblers, 2 chiffchaffs, a red-breasted flycatcher, 3 isabelline shrike and a masked shrike were in Mushrif Palace Gardens in the early afternoon, while all three CHBs and the honey buzzard were seen later at Manhal Palace.

An examination of the eastern edge of Abu Dhabi island and adjacent waters, from the sub-station to the pylon bund, found 115 greater flamingos, 26 spoonbill, 3 great cormorants, 5 grey herons, a little egret, a little green heron, 15 Western reef herons, 2 juvenile ospreys on a pylon nest, 5 oystercatchers, 4 curlew, 3 Caspian terns, 10+ Siberian gulls and another 165+ large gulls, 2 turnstones and a European kingfisher, with 5+ clamorous reed warblers heard in the mangroves.

More next month.

Peter Hellyer

(The Twitch It! Report is extracted from the weekly Twitchers' Guide newsletter, compiled by Simon Aspinall and Peter Hellyer, which can be found on the Ministry of Information website at www.uaeinteract.com Records, please, to Hellyer@emirates.net.ae OR Hudhud10@emirates.net.ae

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Forthcoming ENHG Field Trips

Date Destination
Feb 6-7 Overnight camping field-trip via Al Ain oasis and museum to the Hanging Gardens. The overnight will be in the vicinity of Jebel Qatar, and participants will be invited to climb up the mountain on Friday morning.
Mar 6-7 Family camp and sand driving instruction (Alan McGee leading) in the Al Wathba area. This will be an overnight at less than 60mins from Abu Dhabi.
Mar 14 The second of our floral walks. This time in the Western Lagoon area of Abu Dhabi Island. At least two plant specialists will be in attendance. A picnic lunch will follow.
Mar 27-28 An overnight camping field-trip to the Liwa Oasis. Camping in the sands with a survey of life in the dunes. Returning via Ghayathi.
April 3-4 Desert ecology camping field-trip (Chris Drew leading) This trip, previously postponed, will focus on reptiles and rodents in the Umm Al Zumul area.
April 10-11 Overnight camping field-trip to Ra's Al Khaimah covering archaeology, flora, fauna and sea shells.
May 8-9 Overnight camping fieldtrip to the East Coast, incorporating visits to Ohala and Wadi Hayl.
 

Note: Simon Aspinall has agreed to lead a bird-watching excursion soon. This will be announced at a future ENHG meeting. Ingrid Barcelo may be able to organize a visit to the Royal Stables, possibly on a Thursday morning. For details of all forthcoming excursions you are advised to attend the bi-monthly meetings of ENHG, as dates and destinations may be changed at short notice. Requests for future trips are invited and should be directed to the Excursions Secretary or any committee member. Allestree Fisher, Excursions Secretary

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Items for Sale on ENHG Stall

Abu Dhabi Bird checklist
10Dhs
(free if spend over 50dhs )

Birds of Europe
100Dhs (bargain - covers most birds in this region)

Birdlife in Oman
120Dhs
(Beautiful photographs by the Eriksens)

Birdwatching Guide to Oman
95 Dhs (copies signed by Eriksens & Sargeants)

Birdwatching Guide to UAE
50Dhs
(reduced from 60 Dhs)
(Author: our chairman, Simon - get him to sign copies)

Breeding Birds of UAE SB
30Dhs / HB 60Dhs
(again reduced) Author: Simon - get him to sign copies.

Childrens Encyclopaedia
100Dhs
(facts about the region - aimed at the kids)

Hidden Riches
150Dhs
(Peter Hellyer's highly readable, informative book - get him to sign your copy)

Seashells
30Dhs
(useful little waterproof guide to the region's shells)

Sea Turtles
20Dhs
(find out about our local turtles)

Indigenous Trees
30Dhs
(Reza Khan, Director of Dubai Zoo - know your local trees)

Whales and Dolphins
120Dhs
(Collins latest photographic guide)

Wild about Mammals
40Dhs
(Marijcke Jongbloed mammals of the UAE )

Plant Checklist
25Dhs
(Marijcke Jongbloed - Know your local wild plants)

Cards
15Dhs per pack
(great to send home - local scenes)

ENHG T shirts, Caps, Sweatshirts
25Dhs, 25Dhs, 35Dhs
(Buy any 2 - get 10Dhs off)

The island of Abu Al Abyad
Published by the Environmental Research and Wildlife Development Agency, ERWDA, this book is a detailed look at the environment, wildlife, archaeology and geology of the UAE's largest island. This book is NOT available in the shops, so the Group's Book-Table is probably the only place most members will ever get a chance to buy it. At a price of Dh 125, it's well worth having. Buy quickly, while stocks last!

Feast of Dates
Written by leading archaeologist Dan Potts, and published by Trident Press, this book outlines the history of date cultivation (the oldest evidence of date-palm consumption by Man, over 7,000 years ago, comes from an archaeological site on Abu Dhabi's island of Dalma) and also examines the role of the date, and the date palm, in the traditional life of the people of the region. It also looks at current research, as well as other topics.

The Book-Table probably has the best collection of books and booklets on the UAE's natural history and heritage to be found anywhere in the capital, including many that are not available through the shops. Bring a well-stocked wallet or purse to meetings (and preferably a carrier bag too!) We can't promise something new for every meeting, but there are more new books in the pipeline!

Peter Hellyer

TRIBULUS - complete your set! Group members who would like to obtain back copies of our refereed bi-annual journal TRIBULUS might like to know that copies can be obtained of most past issues (and, if the arms of the Editorial Board are twisted sufficiently gently, photocopies could even be made of issues which, like Vol. 1.1 and Vol. 1.2, are out of print). Individual copies can be purchased for 10Dhs. TRIBULUS is the ONLY regular English language scientific journal on the natural history, archaeology, palaeontology and natural history of the Emirates. Members wishing to obtain back copies should contact either Peter Hellyer (hellyer@emirates.net.ae) OR Simon Aspinall (hudhud10@emirates.net.ae). If they can be collected from my office at the Ministry of Information, so much the better - but please give advance warning, as not all back issues are kept there.

Peter Hellyer

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Lectures

Date Topic Presenter
4th February Film: Treasures of the Gulf --
18th February Tales from the African bush Steve James
4th March CANCELLED Religious holiday  
18th March WWF in the UAE Fred Launay
1st April Ruus Jibal Gary Feulner

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Committee members

Simon Aspinall (Chairman)
Richard Perry (Deputy Chairman)
Wafa Morda'a (Secretary)
Hazim al Chalabi (Membership Secretary)
Peter Hellyer (editor of Tribulus)
Charles Laubach (Member)
Andrew Twyman (Sales)
Arun Kumar (Treasurer)
Dick Hornby (Member)
Ingrid Barcelo (Member)
Allestree Fisher (Excursion Secretary)
Drew Gardner (Member)

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Corporate Sponsors of the ENHG 2003

The following companies are supporting the ENHG's conservation efforts in the UAE. We hope you, as ENHG members, will in turn support these companies whenever you can.

Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations (ADCO)
Abu Dhabi Gas Industries Limited (GASCO)
Al Fahim Group
Al Nasser Holdings
Emirates Holdings
Kanoo Group
Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi
Nama Development Enterprises
National Bank of Abu Dhabi
Serco-IAL Limited

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Patron: H.E. Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak Al Nahayan