UAE Wildlife

on November 18, 2013

When one thinks of the Arabian desert you tend to think of vast tracts of sand dunes and little or no wildlife to be seen except for perhaps the odd camel. Nothing could be farther from the truth as I soon learned.....

Like anywhere I have lived or travelled in the world the local wildlife is usually abundant weather you are in the tropical forests of the Amazon, the open Canadian prairies or the Arabian desert. The trick is finding it and to do that you must study and research about the local flora and fauna, preferably well ahead of your trip if you want the most success. To be honest there is no trick just plain hard work, some reading, research and time spent looking ...and like most things in life you get out what you put in. A good tip is to try connect with local birding or wildlife groups as they are usually very informative and helpful.

On a vacation you usually don't have that luxury of time to devote to a single subject and more often than not, you simply want to snap a selection of the indigenous subjects just so you have something to show for it. To get anything descent and beyond a holiday snapshot will usually require the services of a local guide who has done most of the ground work for you and they are not always available. However having recently moved to Dubai in the UAE I am now fortunately to be able to devote some of my spare time to find, understand and photograph the local wildlife. Every day is a learning experience and I dare say it will be some years before I have a handle on it. One thing for sure that I underestimates is the abundance of wildlife and migrant birds. The trick, particularly in sumer is getting out early morning or late afternoon when they are most active and the heat is less stressful.   

There are many species of birds most of whom are temporary migrants that come to the gulf to breed etc from Europe and Asia. The best months to see those are between October to March. Therefore not only do you have to study and learn the local indigenous species but also those species that migrate at certain times of the year. This can make it almost a lifelong quest. I certainly won't get bored shooting the same subject matter. 

Within this blog post are some of the initial images I have captured and no doubt in time I will get better images of some of the same subjects and replace them over time. For now though I have barely scratched the surface of the wildlife material to photograph here, particularly the insect and birdlife. In time I am going to update my website portfolio with a better representation of the incredible selection and variety of the local wildlife to be found here. 


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