Calendar of Events 2018

Mar 26
Annual General Assemby
Cultural Club, Qurum, Muscat
ESO's Annual General Assembly is only open to ESO Members. Become a Member Today! The aim of this AGM is to vote a new Board and update our members on the work completed in 2016 and on the upcoming projects and activities in 2018.

Cultural Club Location
Mar 24
Earth Hour
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Feb 18
Public Lecture (English)
Knowledge World, Qurum, Muscat (previously called EcOman Center)
7.30pm (Doors open at 7pm)
“Photographing elusive leopards” by David Willis

David will give an illustrated talk about his early days of photographing Arabian leopards in Oman and his progression to capturing images of the snow leopard in the Himalayas. He will also talk about the work of the Snow Leopard Conservancy – India and show two short films he and his sons made for the Conservancy.

David is an Australian artist who first came to Oman in 1979. After several visits the Willis family became resident in Oman in 1986. David has been a keen photographer of animals, working with them in Africa and Asia. In the early 1990’s he obtained the first photographs of the Arabian leopard in the wild using a self-made camera trap and later went on to photography and film snow leopards in the Himalayas.

Jan 30
Public Lecture (English)
Knowledge World, Qurum, Muscat (previously called EcOman Center)
7.30pm (Doors open at 7pm)
Tracking Endangered Vultures and Eagles to Aid Conservation by Mike McGrady & Andrew Kwarteng:

The presentation will focus on scavenging birds, particularly migrating eagles and vultures that spend their winter in Oman. It will give an overview of the scavenging birds, their characteristics, their importance and the threats they face. They will summarize tracking results relating bird movements to the existence of rubbish dumps and the potential risk faced by large birds as well the opportunities for conservation in relation to the electricity network. 

The collision and electrocution of birds at powerlines is a major conservation issue that has been reported from several countries. Globally, more than one billion birds annually are known to be killed by collisions with powerlines. Such mortality could contribute to population decline for species from several avian orders. At the national level, systematic and transparent assessment of rigorously collected data could be used for prioritizing policies and management strategies. Monitoring of bird mortality can provide valuable information to ensure that bird-friendly design at new powerlines, and retro-fitting of exiting lines to achieve desired mortality reductions. In this preliminary study, we examine the potential risks for scavenging birds with electricity infrastructure in Muscat and Ash Sharqiyah regions.

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Jan 23
Public Lecture (English)
Knowledge World, Qurum, Muscat (previously called EcOman Center)
7.30pm (Doors open at 7pm)
“Learning About Whales by Eavesdropping on Their Songs” presented by Dr. Salvatore Cerchio

From the barely audible throbbing of blue whales, to the hauntingly spectacular growls and screams of humpbacks, whales sing. These sirens of the sea perform a diverse and powerful symphony across the globe, with as many different song types as there are species that sing them. By listening to the ocean, and the songs that whales sing, biologists learn an enormous amount of information about species and populations, from details of mating behavior to how whales migrate and which populations are connected or isolated. This lecture will explore the diversity of whale song, ranging from simple pulses of fin whales to the complex and intricate patterns of humpback whales, and present some very new discoveries about the Arabian Sea humpback whales and how their unusual song fits in to the global picture.

Dr. Cerchio has been studying cetaceans around the world for 36 years, and has been working in the Indian Ocean since 2004. His research on cetaceans ranges from humpback whales to coastal dolphins to Omura’s whales, with an emphasis on bioacoustics and vocal behavior. Currently he focuses his research in the Southwest Indian Ocean, based off Madagascar studying humpback whales, blue whales and the newly discovered Omura's whale. Most recently he has collaborated with the Environment Society of Oman on an extensive study of Arabian Sea humpback whale song.

Jan 15
Public Lecture (English)
PDO (Knowledge World)
7.30pm (Doors open at 7pm)
“Birdwatching in Oman - highlights from a 31 year journey” presented by Jens Eriksen. 

Jens Eriksen came with his wife Hanne to Oman in 1986 for Jens to take up a teaching position at Sultan Qaboos University and to help start up the Chemistry Department. Since then the Eriksens have travelled extensively throughout Oman to study the wildlife of this great country. Jens has authored or co-authored numerous books, especially about the birds, and has won several international awards for his photography. Among the latest books are Oman Bird List, edition 7, Wildlife in Oman, a guide for young people, Common Birds in Oman, 3rd edition and Birds of Oman. Jens retired in 2011 to concentrate entirely on his bird studies and wildlife photography. The Eriksens will be leaving Oman very soon and it may be the last chance to hear about their adventures.

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Coffee and tea will be served before the talk. Please bring your own mug as we will not be serving with plastic or paper cups.