Scientific Research in the Nature Reserve
The Rihane that is an important water-catchment’s area protects excellent representation of the Litani, Zahrani, Mechraa, Tasseh rivers; several streams particularly in Sujud and Mlikh; and many springs, mainly in Rihane village, Aichyeh, Mlikh and Aramta; riparian habitats, undisturbed glacial valleys, barren and semi-barren lands, landraces areas, rangelands, huge caves of stalagmites and stalactites, historic agricultural terraces; historic areas with tombs and sarcophagi; old winepress with stone hods; old (more than 500 years) mixed forests with oak (Quercus spp.) as dominant species; pine groves, olive groves, maquis, garrigues, and undisturbed wildlife habitats for hyraxes, birds and reptiles.
In the early December 2001, the Reverend Father Dr. Shafiq Abouzayd has called me on telephone from London to propose the idea of declaring the Jabal Rihane a protected area. Since he is from Mlikh village where he was born and spent his childhood, Dr. Abouzayd showed a constant tendency to protect its environment on the basis of a scientific biodiversity background and cooperation with its inhabitants as well as the local communities of its surroundings. Accordingly, he asked me if I have the willingness to conduct preliminary field studies in Jarjou’a, Loueizeh, Mlikh, Kfarhouneh, Aramta and Rihane villages similarly to what I have previously done, in cooperation with a team of scientists, in five protected areas.