BirdLife Zimbabwe was founded in 1951 as the Rhodesian Ornithological Society (ROS) and became a full member in BirdLife International (BLI) in April 2002. BLI is a global partnership of 120 membership-based organisations that have a common interest in the conservation of birds and biodiversity. Our UK partner, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) assists us with core funding.

Our fundamental purpose is to promote the survival of bird life in Zimbabwe and elsewhere for its intrinsic value and the enjoyment of future generations. Our strategic objectives are centered on species, sites/habitats, people and sustainability.

BirdLife Zimbabwe own their headquarters based in Harare thanks to a generous donation from our partner in the Netherlands, Vogelbescherming Nederland. The BLZ Council is responsible for the smooth running of the organisation and holds regular meetings. Outings, evening meetings, surveys and citizen science projects are organised by the branches. Conservation donor funded projects are undertaken by the staff.

Contact Us

BirdLife Zimbabwe physical location:
35 Clyde Road, Eastlea, HARARE, ZIMBABWE

Tel: (+263-4) 481496/490208



BLZ members can take part in various surveys:

Bird Atlassing – SABAP2 (Southern African Bird Atlassing Programme 2) in Zimbabwe. This exciting project is run by the Animal Demography Unit at the University of Cape Town. This is birding with a purpose - participation in this programme means that you can make a valuable contribution to our knowledge of birds and therefore to bird conservation. Our information will be put straight on to the Zimbabwean map - for more information please contact You can also go on to the SABAP2 zimbabwe facebook site and sign on directly with the ADU and start atlassing .
Field Card Scheme was started in 1962 to establish the geographic and seasonal distribution of Zimbabwe's 650-odd bird species and the information from 1987 to 1992 was incorporated into the first Southern African Bird Atlas Project. The BLZ Field Check List lists all bird species recorded in Zimbabwe, using the numbering system and names in Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa. The information is recorded in the database at the office and collated for ‘Field Observations’, which is printed in Honeyguide and is of world-wide interest.
Special Species Survey focuses on a number of selected bird species that deserve attention because their numbers or areas of distribution have undergone adverse change in the recent past or they are of other research interest. The list may change according to circumstance, but would members please inform us if they see these birds and state number - and sex if possible - location, date, time and behaviour. The results of the survey are also of interest to the Ornithological Research Unit of the Parks and Wildlife Management Authority. The Special Species are:

White Stork, Black Stork, Saddle-billed Stork, Marabou Stork, Yellow-billed Duck, Maccoa Duck, Secretary Bird, Lappet-faced Vulture, Yellow-billed Kite, Verreaux’s Eagle, Martial Eagle, African Crowned Eagle, Bateleur, African Marsh-harrier, Wattled Crane, Grey Crowned Crane, Kori Bustard, Denham’s Bustard, African Skimmer, Grey-headed Parrot, Lilian’s Lovebird, Southern Carmine Bee-eater (in colonies), Silvery-cheeked Hornbill, Southern Ground-hornbill, Blue Swallow, Common Myna, Yellow-billed and Red-billed Oxpecker (outside protected areas).

The Garden Bird Survey and Nest Record Card Scheme – some birds we think of as ‘common’ in our gardens were not always there, so submitting what you see in yours helps fill a gap in our knowledge of the changes taking place. This will be particularly enjoyable for members who may not be able to get to BLZ events. Also about 540 of all bird species recorded in Zimbabwe are known or expected to breed here. Members are requested to submit information - forms which are captured on to a database can be obtained and accessed at the national office.

Bird Ringing has been ongoing for several decades and is coordinated by Afring in Cape Town. The technique of placing of a serially numbered or coloured ring on a bird's leg enables observers to identify that individual during its remaining lifespan, and even afterwards and is particularly useful in the study of bird migration, with some remarkable recoveries including Comb Ducks (Sudan/Chad), White Storks and Barn Swallows (Britain/ Central Europe) and Waders (Siberia). All bird ringing is strictly controlled and permits are only issued to suitably trained and experienced individuals, but enthusiastic members can be of great help - if you are interested, please contact Julia Pierini at tel: 0772-894562
Waterfowl Census - Members are requested to make a special effort to participate in the African Waterfowl Census which takes place annually in Januaryand July. These important sightings are entered onto the Wetlands International Africa database and the results analysed, so threats and changes in bird populations can be monitored.

Publications - The Association’s journal Honeyguide first appeared in 1951, is published twice a year and contains a mixture of scientific and semi-scientific papers and articles, as well as short notes, reports, book reviews and other information of general interest to members and is also distributed to museums and institutional libraries world-wide. Members are requested to contribute interesting observations or an account of a field trip to an out-of-the-way place. Submissions please to Julia Duprée who is in charge of production, at  
BLZkeeps in touch with the membership at large through regular activities which are published every two months in the newsletter Babbler, together with informative reports, news and observations.  Please send your contributions to the Editor –

BLZ Library includes many reference materials comprising books, reports, reprints, audio visual materials, maps, journal and newsletter titles and although primarily a reference library, members may borrow certain titles for a limited period at the discretion of the Librarian.

The Natural History Museum in Bulawayo houses the 4th largest collection in the world of study skins, principally from the African continent, but also from many other countries.