Bulletin 30 - November 1986: Comments


As you will all be aware by now, November 1986 marks the tenth anniversary of the founding of the Emirates Natural History Group (Abu Dhabi). A meeting hurriedly-convened in November 1976 to listen to Prof. Colin Bertram discourse on dugongs was the catalyst that led to the formation of the Group under the Chairmanship of J.N.B. (Bish) Brown. Since then our fortunes have waxed and waned according largely to the enthusiasm of individual members and their length of stay in Abu Dhabi.

It is fair to say, however, that the Group has successfully weathered several minor crises and is now firmly established on the map. The Exhibition and celebrations this autumn are in large part due to the commitment of the present Chairman, Mike Crumbie, who has made it a prime objective to publicise ENHG activities without losing any of our scientific principles.

The Photographic Competition invites wider interest and if all this publicity increases public concern for UAE conservation matters then the exercise will have been more than worthwhile. Thanks are due to all those members who have put in time and effort towards these publicity events, plus the Press and sponsors of the Photographic Competition.

More Committee changes. Terry Donohue, our long-serving Treasurer has left the UAE after a final stint on Das Island, and Jilly Burrows has also departed and given up her Secretarial duties. In their places we welcome Roy Campbell and Joanna Fowler and wish them a stimulating and happy tenure.

The tenth anniversary of the Group also coincides with the 30th issue of the Bulletin, which has been issued regularly three times a year and remains the major written record of the Group's observations over this period. The format has been established for some years now, with 30 pages per issue including an end article in Arabic (usually a translation of a previous article). In the early days we also included a correspondence page but this lapsed in the early 80s. Perhaps now is an opportune moment to ask you, the members, whether you feel any changes in format or content are overdue. It has always been an effort to coax people into writing lengthy articles, but there is always room for snippets of relevant and topical information, odd records and short descriptions of something seen on your travels around the country. Bear in mind that in addition to natural history we also concern ourselves with local history, architecture and folklore. You are of course free to write to me at any time at the Group's address. All letters will be answered, and of course if you do feel like committing yourself to a Bulletin article I shall be only too pleased.

This issue includes two articles from the Al Ain Group, one on archaeology by Dr. Al-Tikriti who works at the Al Ain Museum, and one on Geology by Nick Saines who has recently returned to the United States. The birds of Abu Dhabi town have been extensively surveyed by Group members for several years but here Len Reaney writes of his recordings over the past year on Das. And Ian Hamer presents the second of a series of articles on bees and wasps of the UAE.


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