oryx

Jordan’s Shaumari Wildlife Reserve Has Re-opened

01.07.17 - By Oliver

A leading Middle Eastern Breeding Centre and Nature Reserve

Shaumari Wildlife Reserve is once again welcoming the public in this summer following a five-year maintenance and refurbishment programme. The first wildlife protection reserve in Jordan, Shaumari Wildlife Reserve has since its launch in 1975 created a thriving 22km environment for some of rarest species in the Middle East including, Oryx, gazelles, hyena, Imperial Eagles and onagers, to name but a few.

Started by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature as a breeding center for endangered or locally extinct wildlife, Shaumari Wildlife Reserve has successfully returned Arabian Oryx back to its native habitat, following its extinction from Jordan in 1920. After welcoming four Oryx in 1978, visitors to Shaumari will today see Oryx roaming across the large desert grassland. An icon of Arabia, Oryx is a large white antelope with long pointed horns which is thought to be the origin of the mythical unicorn.

Guests can explore the renovated Shaumari Wildlife Visitor Center, which celebrates the story of the reserve, its inhabitants and biodiversity, before taking an intimate Oryx Safari Tour. The safari will educate visitors about the reserve, as well as showcase the sights of the semi-desert landscapes by jeep and foot over a traditional Jordanian tea break, along with many of the reserve’s many flourishing flora species and animals.
Nasr Al-Tamimi, The Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, Wild Jordan, said, “Shaumari Wildlife Reserve is a fantastic experience for tourists visiting Jordan as it showcases the diversity of our country and passion for conservation whether it is wildlife, history or culture. Every visitor that comes will also be helping to safeguard this important reserve as money will be reinvested in breeding programmes to continue reviving species that are endangered or rare.”

In the reserve, there are 193 types of flora, as well as a wide range of animals including, six species of carnivores such as the Red Fox, Jackal, Wolf, Striped Hyena, Caracal and Wild Cat. Visitors can also try and spot an Imperial Eagle or Egyptian Vulture. To protect the animals’ guests will be able to see Oryx, Gazelles, and Onagers in a separate spacious breeding enclosure that spreads across 22km.

Situated south-east of Amman, Shaumari Wildlife Visitor Centre is open daily to visitors with limited spaces available on the Oryx Safari tour, as seven-people will only be taken out on each excursion, and advanced bookings are recommended.