The Souq Waqif Falcon Hospital has treated 35,000 birds in 2022 and continues to provide excellent avian healthcare at the ongoing seventh edition of Katara International Falcon and Hunting Exhibition, according to hospital director Dr Ikdam Majed AlKarkhi.
Providing some insights into their groundbreaking accomplishments, Dr AlKarkhi told Gulf Times that the hospital offers a wide range of medical services to falcons.
“Last year, we received 35,000 birds, in our main branch and in Al Khor, so around this figure are treated annually,” he said, noting that the hospital has been participating in the exhibition for the last seven years.
Dr AlKarkhi noted that these medical services cover cutting-edge medical examinations, including digestive system check-ups, respiratory system endoscopy, x-rays, hematology blood tests, and biochemistry assessments to gauge the health of essential organs such as the liver and kidneys.
Among the services offered, he said, the hospital conducts laboratory tests for parasites and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, enabling the diagnosis of bacterial and viral diseases. These tests are especially crucial for falcon owners planning to take their birds outside Qatar, as the hospital issues health certificates for these purposes.
Dr AlKarkhi stressed the hospital's commitment to comprehensive care, which extends to a number of services such as microchip and Passive Integrated Transponder (PIT) implantations. These services underscore the hospital's dedication to meeting the unique and diverse needs of falconers.
He stated that one of the achievements of the Souq Waqif Falcon Hospital is its integration of cutting-edge technology into falcon care. He underlined two major additions to the hospital's array of services this year: the introduction of X-ray examinations for falcons and the establishment of a PCR laboratory. These innovations, he pointed out, represent a significant leap in the hospital's capabilities, allowing for more accurate diagnoses and better treatment options.
About the most common diseases treated at the hospital, Dr AlKarkhi cited parasitic and bacterial diseases as the prevailing challenges. These illnesses, he said, are particularly concerning due to their potential for easy transmission from other bird species like pigeons.
With thousands of falcons being treated annually, he reiterated the hospital's year-round dedication to falcon health and welfare.
Dr Ikdam Majed AlKarkhi with a falcon (supplied picture).