By Laman Ismayilova
Director of the Zoology Institute of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS) Ilham Alekperov spoke about new discoveries and breakthroughs in this field while talking to Day.Az.
“Activity of the Zoology Institute covers all issues related to the fauna of our country. For many years we carry out studies over various groups of animals important for the processes occurring in nature. Another important direction in our activity is research on parasites, including parasitic diseases of all wild and domestic birds and animals, their transmission and prevention. With the increase of fish farms the number of the related researches further expanded, "Alekperov said.
He reminded that the Institute pays a great attention to the hydrobiological, biological and ichthyological research in the Azerbaijan sector in the Caspian Sea.
Another extremely important research activity of the Institute of Zoology includes entomological research, i.e. the study of insects.
"The practical importance of this study is the early detection of insect and disease outbreaks, detection of highly dangerous so-called quarantine species and organization of biological methods for control over various pests by growing useful insects," he added.
The Zoology Institute also keeps focus on the rare and endangered species of animals.
“Our specialists pay a great attention to the rare and endangered species of animals, from invertebrates (mollusks, insects) to mammals. Recently, the research of the leading specialists of our institute was summarized and published in the "Red Book" of Azerbaijan, which provides information about 243 rare and endangered species found in the country’s territories", he said.
Speaking about the future plans, the director of the Zoology Institute said that the scientific center is going to work with foreign experts.
“We are going to work with foreign experts to organize a diagnostic laboratory for the detection and prevention of diseases of honey bees,” he said. “Also we plan to work together with the largest fish farms in Azerbaijan for disease prevention on the fish farms.”
Alekperov further emphasized that in recent years, Azerbaijani zoologists have made a significant contribution to the study of wildlife.
“In 2010-2015, our experts have for the first time described 1 genus and 12 species of single-celled animals, as well as 3 genus and 15 species of arachnids.
“Together with the Russian colleagues we have discovered 2 species of dragonfly and 19 species, which are new for the fauna of Azerbaijan. Important results were also achieved by our parasitologist, as in 2015, specialists of the Institute of Zoology revealed Cryptosporidium oocysts in two species of birds. The same year along with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) we found 6 group leopard species in Nakhchivan and two more in Lankaran", said Alekperov.
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