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El Fekha Claimed as a New Hima

SPNL in partnership with the Fakha municipality and CREADEL social organization have declared on 6 May 2013 a new Hima site in the village of El Fekha in the Anti-Lebanon Mountains of Bekaa. The project funded by the CEPF, was launched in a ceremony attended by the SPNL team, CREADEL, and members from the municipality of El Fekha and local community, and embarked the journey of future sustainable use of community based natural resources management in the area. Hima EL Fekha, considered as the 8thHima in Lebanon by SPNL, is a biologically-diverse important site, for it harbors more than 50 bird species, out of which 10 are considered biome-restricted. El Fekha is also an extension of the Ras Baalbek Important Bird Area (IBA), as classified by BirdLife International. Pascal Abdallah, the Hima Site Manager in El Fekha, is planning to turn his privately owned house into a bed and breakfast inn for the visitors who wish to visit the village and spend the night there to explore the diverse ecological and cultural landscape of the Hima. In addition, this Hima will provide the basis for organizing the grazing system in El Fekha, whereby methods for sustainable grazing will be promoted by SPNL in coordination with the local herders themselves.

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