Hazeva Field School Birdwatching Center

Welcome to the Arava Desert - home to an unparalleled natural world where flora and fauna originating from the Sahara, east Africa, the deserts of central Asia and Arabia all co-exist in a natural combination that cannot be found elsewhere.

Now let us zoom in on the Shezaf nature reserve. Situated in the northern Arava Valley it is Israel’s largest nature reserve and boasts some of Israel’s most remarkable landscapes. The reserve borders are the Jordanian border to the east and the massive Makhteshim (craters) reserve stretching across the Negev to the west.

This "Land of Genesis" hosts the largest most unfragmented open space in the entire country, and stores a wealth of natural merits.

 

Due to its geographical location, the Arava Valley is one of the most important migration flyways in the world. In addition this unique ecosystem hosts some remarkable species, some of which are found nowhere else in Israel. Specialties like Nubian Nightjar, Arabian Warbler, Greater Hoopoe Lark and Pharaoh Eagle Owl breed here is small numbers and common residents include Blackstart, Desert Lark, Rock Martin and Scrub Warbler.

 

If all of the above is still not enough to put you on the next plane to Sapir airfield, than perhaps one of the longest ongoing field studies in animal behavior and ecology will do so - The Arabian Babbler Research Project. This famous research project has been running for decades and led by Prof. Amotz Zehavi. The Babbler research was the basis of some of the leading global theories in animal behavior, namely "the Handicap Principle".

 

It is hard not to fall in love with these "Kibbutznik" like birds (the only cooperative breeder in Israel), as they survive the desert hardships as a group with strict social codes.

Benefiting from over 40 years of consecutive research about the biology, ecology and behavior of the Arabian Babblers the birds are now a powerful educational tool. Since many of the Babbler families are now habituated and tolerant to humans we can observe these remarkable birds closely and uncover their behavior and Babbler gossip in a unique way.

 

Maybe inspired by the Babblers, or from elsewhere, here at the Hazeva Field School Birding Center we believe that education is everything, especially when it comes to nature conservation. We are constantly striving to strengthen the bonds between people of all ages and their natural environment. This is achieved through various educational programs and tours, on a local scale and beyond that revolve around the wonderful natural assets the region has to offer.

Come visit us year-round in the land of eternal sun!

 

 

 

 
land marks