Jabal Ali Wetland Sanctuary

Inter tidal Lagoons
Acropora downingi-Coral
Anomastrea irregularis (cf Pseudosiderastrea tayami)
Arabian butterflyfish - Chaetodon melapterus
Arabian Gulf sea snake (Hydrophis lapemoides)
Caulerpa sp. [cf noodle seagrass (Syringodium isoetifolium)]
Seagrass - Halodule uninervis
Paddle weed - Halophila ovalis
Seagrass bed
Chromodoris annulata
Green turtle - Chelonia mydas
Hawksbill turtle - Eretmochelys imbricata
Jabal Ali Wetland Sanctuary Coastal Area
Lesser crested tern - Thalasseus bengalensis
Longfin batfish - Platax teira
Platygyra daedalea
Turbinaria peltata

Jabal Ali Wetland Sanctuary

  • Country: 
    United Arab Emirates
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    2,002 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    24°56'N 54°56'E
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


Located in the Emirate of Dubai, Jabal Ali Wetland Sanctuary falls within the Jabal Ali Marine Sanctuary (JAMS), which is recognized by the Convention on Biological Diversity as an Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Area (EBSA). This coastal and marine wetland comprises areas of coral reefs, mangroves, shallow lagoons, seagrass beds, oyster beds and sandy shorelines, which maintain a healthy and diverse wetland habitat that provides shelter for over 500 marine species. Among these are many globally threatened species such as the critically endangered hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata); the endangered mottled eagle ray (Aetomylaeus maculatus) and green turtle (Chelonia mydas); and the vulnerable dugong (Dugong dugon) and Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin (Sousa chinensis). The extensive seagrass beds serve as an important fish nursery and feeding ground for the green turtles and dugong; the sandy beaches provide the only breeding grounds in the Emirate for the hawksbill turtles (with 30 nests recorded in 2017). Given the rapid development of coastal areas in the Emirates, there are very few such sites remaining that support a relatively diverse set of habitats and rich biodiversity, and conserving this ecosystem is crucial for the survival of the species it supports.

Administrative region: 
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  • Global international designation: 
    • Other global designation
  • National legal designation: 
    • Protected area as per Local Law No 11 of 2003 - Jabal Ali Marine Reserve
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)

Additional reports and documents