Scientific name

Chlamydotis undulata

Locally known as


IUCN status



This dull brown bird can survive and thrive in arid habitats including hot deserts, meaning it is ideally suited to the UAE climate.

Key threats

Predators, poaching, hunting and habitat decline.

Where they're found today

North Africa, the Canary Islands and the west Sahara Desert region.

Abu Dhabi’s efforts

The International Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC) mission is to protect bustards against extinction through breeding and careful management of their population. So far, they bred approximately 400,000 Houbaras, since when! Extensive research on the ecology and movement of Houbara has been undertaken by NARC across its breeding ranges over the last 25 years has provided important ecological information, vital for their conservation.

Fun facts

  1. The Houbara Bustard is a shy bird and rarely uses its voice.
  2. Houbara bustard eggs are ‘camouflaged’ with shades that match desert nests to protect them from attack by predators.
  3. Houbara Bustards spend most of their time on the ground searching for food (typically seeds, insects and small creatures
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