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Tuesday 7 November 2023

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

The Siyal Islands are a group of islands off the coast of northeastern Africa, located in the Red Sea. The islands are located in the Halaib Triangle.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

The islands are part of the Elba Protected Area of Egypt, and are home to the white-eyed gull, with an estimated seventy individuals at the maximum, as well as several ospreys. The islands are surrounded by rocks and coral, and have a sandy surface with scant marine vegetation. The local fishermen, descendants of the Huteimi peoples identified by J. R. Wellsted, harvest turtle and bird eggs from the surrounding area.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

What is the Red Sea most famous for? 

10 Interesting Facts about Egypt & The Red Sea - Fly & Sea ... A long, thin body of water situated between the Arabian Peninsula and Africa, the Red Sea is an epic scuba diving destination. From wrecks to reefs, there are hundreds of amazing dive sites beneath its sparkling surface.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

The Hamata Islands are also known as the Qulaan Archipelago and consist of four (not three as stated by some tour operators) islands  Siyal, Shawarit, Umm al-Shaykh and Mahabis – located between 3 and 7 km from the coast.  There is also a small fifth island formed only at high tide but connected at low tide with the Hamata mangrove shoreline.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

All the islands fall within the Wadi El Gamal National Park in which you can find over 450 species of coral and over 1200 species of fish. It is also a great place to come across the enchanting dugong and hawksbill turtles, often found grazing on the sea grass meadows which fringe the islands, as well as the acrobatic and inquisitive spinner dolphin. Green turtles are also known to nest on Siyal island from May to November.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

The islands are also a great birdwatching sanctuary with larges colonies of terns and gulls. Bird species which inhabit the archipelago include the threatened Sooty Falcon ( Falco Concolor), the Bridled Tern (Onychoprion Anaethetus – often in large numbers during the summer), the Caspian Tern (Hydropogne Caspia), the Green-Backed Heron, the Reef Heron, the Red Billed tropic bird, the European Spoonbill, the Ruddy Turnstone, the Western Reef Egret, the White-eyed Gull, the Brown Booby (Sula Leucogaster), the Crab Plover (Dromas Ardeola),  the Osprey and Hemphric’s Gull.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

Near Siyal and Rawabel islands, the coastal fringing reef widens out and is interspersed with deep pools and has a crenulated boundary . The reef flat can be distinguished into outer and inner reef flat at certain places and the reef flat area adjacent to the coastline appears muddy. Sanded reef flats are also seen in two distinct locations on the reef.

Siyal Islands Red Sea Egypt

One reef flat moat is found to separate the muddy reef flat from the reef flat. Presence of algae is also noticed on the reef flat. Off-shore fringing reefs of Siyal and coral pinnacles of Rawabel islands could only be detected with AWiFS data dated 2nd and 25th August, 2005. However, detail mapping of these islands require high resolution data. 


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