Egypt: In Search of a Permanent Veterinary Team for the Camel Market in Birqash

Camel Transport at Birqash Market, Egypt

Animals' Angels is with the camels at the market in Birqash. On two days we are on the road with Prof. Dr. Barbara Padalino and Dr. Alexander Rabitsch to evaluate the market situation for the camels. We are also accompanied by an Egyptian veterinarian and two veterinary students who want to help us and the animals on site.

The conditions are still catastrophic for the animals: the violence towards the animals and the ignorance of the workers who deal with them on a daily basis are overwhelming. Camels that have eyes and noses beaten bloody. Animals panicking trying to escape the beating sticks of the workers. Lame, sick and completely exhausted animals that are nevertheless loaded and transported. The list of abuses in this market is long, very long. And for us it is clear: Until visible changes can be achieved here, it will take a lot of time, nerves, patience and confidence.

But we do not want to and cannot give up yet. We are too touched by the fate of these gentle animals, thousands of which are transported every week from Sudan to Egypt as 'slaughter' camels. Like Amoun: The young camel bull is bleeding from the nose. His left front leg is tied up and he can only limp. It had rained during the night and the ground has become muddy and slippery. This makes it even more difficult for him to walk. He is so hungry that he cautiously approaches us to eat the soiled straw that is lying in front of us at the loading ramp. We set off to get alfalfa for him and the other camels in the paddock. But by the time we get back, he's gone - loaded onto one of the many pick-ups on the way to the slaughterhouse.

As a team, we discuss the best ways to help the camels on site. Together with Prof. Padalino, we are now drawing up a project plan in the next few days and hope that in the coming months we will be able to establish a permanent team of veterinarians at the market who will stand up for the camels in Birqash with a lot of courage and energy. We are confident and will not give up so quickly!