My name is Abdulhakim, but for
short I am called Abdul or Abdi. Anyway, I am a 19 year old high school
graduate. I am originally from Somalia
which is in a bit of a crisis right now. I am an amateur birdwatcher (quite
frankly I'm VERY attached to birdwatching, I have seen 285 bird species out of the 410 on the country list) and I plan to travel all around
the world. I particularly want to go to the Antarctic, Wrangel Island,
The Galapagos Islands, The Seychelles, The Azores, The Canary Islands,
The Shetlands, The Falklands, Kerguelen Island, Australia, New Zealand,
The Congo, Cameroon, Namibia, Botswana, Cape of Good Hope, Morocco, Oman,
India, Indonesia, Chile, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica and
of course Somalia. You are probably wondering .... why all the islands?? I'll tell you why,
it's because all the unique species breed on islands, the more isolated
the place the better. I am totally into sports and staying fit. Soccer,
basketball, baseball, cricket, track and field, athletics... you name it!!
I used to play in a soccer team, I was the key striker. I also like camping,
hiking, movies, music, pArTiEs...and... I'm an Internet addict. My plan
for the near future is to make up a complete and up-to-date atlas on the
birds of somalia.
I have always liked birds and
watching them, they are my No. 1 passion. I like watching them, studying
the habits and admiring them. My high point in birdwatching was in 1999
when I saw the first Asiatic House Martin (Delichon dasypus) at Al Wathba
Fodder Fields on the 15th of October 1999. I was with two of THE top ornithologists
in the UAE (Stephen L. James & Simon J. Aspinall). The bird was the
first record for the entire Middle East, and probably the entire Western
Other birds I saw that I was
very happy about was the first Pacific ( Asian Fork tailed) Swift (Apus pacificus) for the entire Middle
East! Ornithologist Simon Aspinall saw the bird and alerted us to its presence. We were 5 lucky birders
at Al Wathba Fodder Fields early morning of the 24th of September 1999.
My passion for birds has doubled when I joined the Emirates Natural History
Group 5 years ago where I met birdwatchers from different places around
the world, telling me of their experiences. Some of them are Ornithologists
and studying birds is their profession. For others birdwatchering is a
hobby and for some birdwatching, is a business (organising bird tours etc.).
I live here in Abu Dhabi, the
capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE for short) with my family. Abu
Dhabi is one of the many islands of the UAE. The UAE has become my second
homeland and a love it very much. The UAE is located on the Arabian peninsula
in the Middle East. The Arabian (Persian) Gulf is to the northeast of the
UAE while the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea are to the east. The UAE
is composed of 7 emirates (states): Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm
al Quwain, Ras al Khaimah and Al Fujairah. The oasis of Al Ain is located
near the Oman border.
I have been working as a volunteer
at the Environmental Research and Wildlife Development Agency (ERWDA)
ever since I graduated from high school (June 1999). After being a volunteer
for 7 months, I became a paid employee of one of its departments, the Terrstrial
Environment Research Center. ERWDA has everything .....
the people, the atmosphere, the work.
During my volunteer days I was been helping around with the bird data for
an oil spill drill and for Al Wathba Lake Wetland Reserve. More recently
I've handled the bird survey during recent oil spill which occured off the nearby Sadiyat
Island. I'm involved in the Al Wathba Lake Wetland Reserve bird survey and in mid 2000 I'll be doing a survey of offshore breeding birds. I have my entire life planned
out; I want to take a BSc in Environmental Science (+ minor in Geographic Information Systems), then an MSc in Environmental
& Wildlife Management (+ minor in Geohydrology), then a PhD in Ornithology (+ minor in Botany). I haven't selected a university yet because the cost of a university is a huge issue and a major burden. I'm ofcourse looking forward to doing research all over the globe, and
travelling everywhere! I have participated in the Raleigh International Expedition (http://www.raleigh.org.uk) selection weekend on the 30th/31st
of March 2000. It was great fun and I learnt a great deal from it and made some wonderful and exciting friends. We were assigned tasks which we had to complete, keeping in mind what Raleigh
is all about. I got selected and my next task is to raise some 3000 British pounds (funds + flight & equipment) needed for the expedition. I am also a member of The 1st Abu Dhabi Ventures Group.
yeah! I don't like the pink
curtains either, I was at a friend's house.