ABU DHABI, 8th December, 2017 (WAM) — Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, H.H. Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court, inaugurated the activities of the 4th International Festival of Falconry at Khalifa Park in Abu Dhabi on Friday.
The two-day heritage event is being organised by the Emirates Falconers Club in collaboration with strategic partners from ministries, national organisations and local authorities.
Sheikh Hamed said,”Authentic heritage of the international falconry permeates the festival. Activities and heritage districts present glimpses of the life of forefathers and their rich traditions.” HH took a tour of different pavilions and districts including the Falconry Display, which takes the visitors through an enjoyable and unique journey through the history of the International Festival of Falconry since 1976, as well as through an exhibition of rare photographs taken by the lenses of those who witnessed the most important event in the history of falconry. He also stopped at UAE pavilion, the Emirates Falconers Club, the National Archives tent, e International Falconry Schools Corner and the international Initiatives Exhibits.
Organisers said the Festival in its current edition has witnessed extensive international participation and is the largest in the world with participation from over 700 falconers and researchers that represent 90 countries from across the globe. The Festival is of great importance as it is one of the main events that contributes to the preservation of the dignified UAE cultural heritage and deepens the link between the past and the present.
The Festival offers more than 30 initiatives designed specifically for all age groups targeted towards passing on the sport of falconry hunting to future generations and the knowledge of the benign manners inherited by the children of the region from the first falconer, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
At the UAE section in the park, visitors will be able to know the most important leading initiatives of the country regarding the preservation of falconry and its active role in the protection of falcons, its prey and its environment.
At the pavilion of Emirates Falconers Club, visitors can visit exhibitions to get to know the different breeds of Arabian Saluki Dogs that have always accompanied falconers during hunting over the past centuries, and at the section of Al Ain Zoo there will be a display of several birds of prey and a tent for “Sheltering Birds of Prey.”
At the “International Falconry School,” visitors and researchers may learn about the most important methods followed by countries such as Slovakia, Poland, Spain, Zimbabwe, South Africa for the conservation of this international heritage and the most important tools used by these countries to spread the art of hunting with birds of prey and all their different types.
The Mohamed Bin Zayed Falconry and Desert Physiognomy School offers visitors, through its tent on display, an opportunity to learn how to deal with falcons, train them on standing on their perch, and to be familiar with the different kinds of falconry equipment and how to use them. Visitors who are interested in falconry will also have the opportunity to join the school which is the first specialized one in the world that teaches Arabian Falconry, tracking and desert studies.
The International Festival of Falconry has been taking place every three years in the United Arab Emirates with participation from international delegations and experts working in the fields of hunting and the environment. The current 4th Edition of the Festival was inaugurated in Remah on 4th December where there was a Desert Camp that lasted for three days and the initiatives shifted to Khalifa Park starting today and will continue till 9 pm on Saturday, 9th December.