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Despite being considered by many to be mainly a desert country, Oman has a varied wildlife both on land and in its surrounding waters. Mammals such as the leopard, the oryx, gazelles, the tahr, the ibex, desert foxes and wild cats can be found and the waters around Oman are home to twenty-two species of whales and dolphins.
Thousands of sea turtles migrate annually from the shores of the Arabian Gulf, the Red Sea and Somalia to lay their eggs on the Sultanate’s shores. Oman has five of the seven species of sea turtles. They are: The Green Turtle, found on most Omani beaches and plentiful in Ras Al Hadd, Ras Al Jinz, Masirah Island and Ad Daymaniyat Islands; the Loggerhead Turtle that nests on Masirah Island, the shores of Dhofar and Ad Daymaniyat Islands; the Hawksbill Turtle that nests on the shores of Muscat and Ad Daymaniyat Islands; the Olive Ridley Turtle that nests on Masirah Island; and the Leatherback Turtle which is found in Omani waters but does not nest in the Sultanate.