Muscat: A 13-year-old Omani boy has been thanked by the Environment Authority for saving and nursing a nightjar that landed next to his home, because it was too exhausted to fly anymore.
Ali bin Ahmed bin Kofitan bait Saeed, who attends Usama bin Zaid School, lives with his family in Awqad in Wilayat Salalah in the southern Dhofar region. A keen nature lover, Ali’s interest in wildlife – especially in birds – has been developed through watching nature channels, as well as eagerly soaking up content on YouTube.
His love for animals has seen him set up a small area in his home where he keeps grains, water and pieces of meat for migratory birds in need of rest and refuelling. On the day Ali spotted the nightjar, he was playing outside, when he found the bird in the alleyway next to his home.
“It was very exhausted,” he told the Times of Oman. “When I saw the bird, I remembered it feeds on chicken and meat, so it must be a bird of prey.”
“I cut up some pieces of chicken and fed it during the entire day,” Ali added.
It was during one of Ali’s feeding sessions that his father came home from work, and realising that his son had found the bird and was nursing it back to health, decided to call the local office of the Environment Authority to turn the bird over to their care, as they are best equipped to handle such cases.
“The next morning, I called the Directorate General of the Environment in our region,” said his father, Ahmed. “They came over immediately, and thanked us for taking care of the bird.”
For the young boy’s efforts, he received a call from Dr Abdullah bin Ali Al Omairi, the chairman of the Environment Authority, which also made Ali’s deeds public by sharing them on their social media sites. “I want to thank Dr Abdullah and the staff of the directorate in Dhofar,” said Ahmed bin Kofitan bait Saeed.
A migratory bird that is primarily nocturnal, the nightjar visits the Sultanate twice a year: from the beginning of April to the end of May, and from September to December.