Muscat: His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tarik has issued a Royal Decree establishing the National Natural Park Reserve in Governorate of Musandam.
The decree recognises the richness of Musandam Governorate in terms the geographic and natural diversification in and the tourism potentials attractive to tourists from other countries.
In a statement issued by the Environment Authority (EA), EA has valued the decree and reaffirmed that it would put in place the Royal Decree in coordination with the ministries and departments concerned to ensure optimal management of the reserve and that it would issue the rules and regulations necessary for its management, in accordance with the decree.
The total area of the reserve is 1149.40 square kilometres, according to the surveys conducted by the Environment Authority in cooperation with the Office of the Governor of Musandam.
The islands in Musandam Governorate are the key locations not affected with human intervention and are of high national and regional significance and a habitat for birds. The islands represent a natural museum and are formed of limestone and coral reef.
According to the EA surveys, the waters around the islands host various types of coral reefs, fungi and sea herbs that attract fish, green turtles and other sea creatures.
The surveys also affirmed the presence of rich wildlife including wild rabbit, hedgehog, lynx, mountain fox, red fox, wild cat and reptiles among others, while the survey on wild plants reaffirmed the presence of over 200 species of plants including rare and endangered plants.
The sea islands in Musandam Governorate also enjoy a rich vegetation cover.
It is worth mentioning that the islands are separated from the main lands at the time the huge number of sea birds has transformed the islands into a fascinating scene, mainly Umm A’Tair Island. Sea snakes and green turtles are also seen at the sand beaches.
Sea mammals, dolphins and whales, red fox, wild cats and reptiles are also common at the islands of Musandam Governorate. This environment rich in fauna and flora would play a vital role in encouragement and development of ecotourism.