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Emirati Researchers Pioneer First Fisheries Resource Assessment Survey To Reveal Groundbreaking Insights In Fujairah’s Deeper Waters (26 June 2023)

The Fujairah Environment Authority recently selected Maryam Alhefeiti, a Marine researcher, and SabhahAlhmoudi, an Environmental researcher at the Fujairah Research Center, to undertake the First Fisheries Resource Assessment Survey in the deeper waters of Fujairah. Equipped with the most advanced marine scientific research vessel in the Middle East, the Jaywun, operated by the environment agency – Abu Dhabi; the researchers embarked on a two-week survey to gather crucial data on the fish stocks in Fujairah.

Jaywun, a state-of-the-art equipment boasting of cutting-edge techniques, including six onboard laboratories, acoustic fish finding technology, underwater cameras and sensors, computer-aided data analysis, and next-generation genomic technologies; allowed Maryam and Sabhah to collect data swiftly and accurately, resulting in a comprehensive understanding of the fish stock, condition, and other relevant metrics in the Fujairah area. The young researchers expressed their fervorat being able to utilize such a well-equipped vessel, which greatly enhanced their survey efforts and provided an in-depth assessment of marine life in Fujairah.

The key objective of the survey conducted by the Fujairah Research Centre scientists was to enhance knowledge regarding the diversity, distribution, and abundance of fish stocks, as well as their species, size, and age in Fujairah waters. Employing acoustic data collection and eDNA baselines, which marked the first of their kind in the Fujairah region, the survey enabled the detection of present species, invasive and endangered species, and comprehensive genome sequencing using the research vessel's cutting-edge equipment.

Maryam Alhefeiti expressed her gratitude and commented, “We are honored to have been given this remarkable opportunity to conduct the First Fisheries Resource Assessment Survey in Fujairah. The support from H.E. Aseela Al Moalla, Director of Fujairah Environment Authority, and Dr. Fouad Lamghari, Director of Fujairah Research Centre, has been invaluable throughout this endeavor. We are thrilled to contribute to the understanding and preservation of marine life in Fujairah waters.”

SabhahAlhmoudialso added, “The data we collected during this survey will play a crucial role in developing improved management strategies and conservation efforts for the fisheries resources in Fujairah. These waters are ecologically significant and vital for the surrounding communities. We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute to their preservation.”

This mission sought to amass valuable data that would contribute to the creation of an accurate conceptual overview of the marine environment, particularly the fish species inhabiting the area. Maryam and Sabah emphasized the paramount importance of this information in implementing the necessaryconservation measures, ensuring the sustainability of fish resources, and developing more effective management strategies for the future.

The survey, spanning two weeks in the offshore waters of Fujairah, has yielded significant findings that will be instrumental in refining management strategies and conservation efforts for fisheries resources in the region. These resources hold immense ecological value for the surrounding communities and play a vital role in sustaining their livelihoods.

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