Alheda’a: Saudi herders use ‘special language’ for camel training – WION

Camels, known as the ship of the deserts, have been a mode of transportation for long in Saudi Arabia. Photograph:(AFP)

The main motive behind UNESCO listing the communication is to protect the “Alheda’a” and provide an opportunity for its development


The main motive behind UNESCO listing the communication is to protect the “Alheda’a” and provide an opportunity for its development
UNESCO has inscribed a traditional connection between camels and the inhabitants of the Arabian Peninsula in its list of intangible cultural heritage. The UN cultural agency said that a skilled camel herder can use his voice to soothe the animal, make it kneel and change directions as they trudge together through the desert sands with a signal, AFP reported. 
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The cries of camel herder Hamad al-Marri have been recognised as a means of communication with his animals. The cries mean nothing to the untrained animals.
The main motive behind UNESCO listing the communication is to protect the “Alheda’a” and provide an opportunity for its development. 
It said, “Herders train their camels to recognise the difference between right and left, to open their mouths when asked, and to kneel down to be ridden.”
Known as the ‘ship of the deserts’, camels have been a mode of transportation for long in Saudi Arabia.
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Jasser al-Harbash, CEO of the Saudi Arabia Heritage, said there have been rock carvings that painted camels, that tell the story of camels. 
Marri, a civil servant who owns around 100 camels, said there is a special language between the camel and its owner. He added that a camel recognises its owner’s voice and responds to it immediately, but if someone else calls it, it won’t respond. 
As per the world organisation, Alheda’a can be deployed for a range of tasks such as bringing together the scattered herd, making them kneel and soothing them as they drink water.
(With inputs from agencies)
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