by Hana Namrouqa – Jul 25,2017

AMMAN — Authorities are analysing a recent video which appears to show Nubian ibexes being killed in the Mudawarra area in the south of Jordan, in an effort to track down those responsible, a conservationist said on Monday.

The video, which shows at least two dead ibexes placed alongside an automatic weapon and bullets, raised the concern of social media users, who called for the tracking down of the hunters of the endangered animal.

The Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN) and the Rangers sent patrols that swept the Mudawarra area in their search for the hunters.

“The patrols didn’t find any illegal hunting activities in Mudawarra. We are now investigating the content of the video to find any details that can lead us to the violators,” Abdul Razzaq Hmoud, head of The Conservation and Hunting Regulation section at the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN), told The Jordan Times.

Hmoud said that the RSCN targets the Mudawarra area, located near the Jordanian-Saudi borders, in its regular inspection patrols, underscoring that the society last year appointed an inspector to monitor illegal hunting in the area.

“During the past year, the society recorded 240 illegal hunting cases, none of which were in Mudawarra,” he noted.

Hmoud said that the society has no surveys of the presence of the Nubian ibex in Mudawarra, speculating that the animals might have travelled from Wadi Rum to Mudawarra.

Over-hunting of the ibex in the past led to its extinction in Jordan and other countries in the region, prompting the International Union for the Conservation of Nature to categorise the animal as globally endangered on its red list.

Ibexes are wild goats that live in the mountainous regions of Europe, north central Asia and northern Africa, which have long, curved horns and cloven hooves, according to web sources.

In 1989, the RSCN launched a project to reintroduce the Nubian ibex in Jordan within a 10-square-kilometres area in the Mujib Nature Reserve.

In 2006, the animal was released into the wild in Mujib and the ibex population currently stands at 600-700 heads, while sixty ibexes were released in 2016 in Wadi Rum.