About BirdLife International

Who is BirdLife International?

BirdLife International is a global partnership of conservation organisations (NGOs) that strives to conserve birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources. Together we are over 100 BirdLife Partners worldwide – one per country or territory – and growing. 

We are driven by our belief that local people, working for nature in their own places but connected nationally and internationally through our global Partnership, are the key to sustaining all life on this planet. This unique local-to-global approach delivers high impact and long-term conservation for the benefit of nature and people.

BirdLife is widely recognised as the world leader in bird conservation. Rigorous science informed by practical feedback from projects on the ground in important sites and habitats enables us to implement successful conservation programmes for birds and all nature. Our actions are providing both practical and sustainable solutions significantly benefiting nature and people. 


“In our several intriguing years with BirdLife, we have been both astonished and inspired by what can be accomplished by a dedicated group with the passion, outreach, and professionalism of the BirdLife Partnerships. It is an amazing organisation.”
Margaret Atwood & Graeme Gibson, BirdLife Rare Bird Club members


How does BirdLife International work?

Each BirdLife Partner is an independent environmental or wildlife not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation (NGO). Most Partners are best known outside of the Partnership by their organisation’s name. This allows each Partner to maintain its individual national identity within the Global PartnershipPerhaps you might recognise some of the 121 BirdLife International Environmental NGOs Partners from their logos below.

BirdLife Partners work together in a collaborative, coordinated fashion across national boundaries to build a global Partnership of national conservation organisations.

The BirdLife partnership has 6 Regional BirdLife Coordination Offices throughout the world and a Global Office in Cambridge, UK – together known as “The BirdLife International Secretariat”. The Secretariat co-ordinate and facilitate the BirdLife International strategies, programmes and policies.


BirdLife International in numbers

  • As the world’s largest Nature Conservation partnership BirdLife International has more than 10 million members and supporters.

  • This comprises 2.72 million members and 7.2 million people who supported BirdLife Partners in 2015 without being members.

  • BirdLife Partner Environmental NGOs worked with over 4,000 local groups, including action at more than 1,000 Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas; and our work involved 1.9 million young people (under 18).

  • The BirdLife Partnership employs nearly 8,000 staff supported by 5,000 volunteers.

  • The BirdLife partnership has a combined budget of US$ 636 million as of the end of 2014.



Our Board


Honorary President


Her Imperial Highness

Princess Takamado of Japan

Honorary Vice-Presidents:


Baroness Barbara Young of Old Scone (UK)

Dr Gerard A Bertrand (USA)

Miss Jane Fenton (UK)

Mr A P Leventis (UK)

Mr Ben Olewine IV (USA)

Mr Peter Johan Schei (Norway)









Chief Executive

Patricia Zurita


Braulio Dias


Nick Blackwood



Council of BirdLife International


Mark Anderson - BirdLife South Africa
Achilles Byaruhanga - Nature Uganda
Claudia Feltrup-Azafzaf - AAO-Tunisia

Rosabel Miro - Audubon Panama
Alberto Yanosky - Guyra Paraguay

Shawn Lum - NSS - Singapore
Sarath Kotagama - FOGSL -Sri Lanka

Halmos Gergö - MME -Hungary
Philippe Funcken -Natagora - Belgium
Vera Voronova - ACBK - Kazakhstan

Middle East
Yehya Khaled - RSCN -Jordan
Assad Serhal - SPNL - Lebanon

Kevin Hague -Forest and Bird -New Zealand
Paul Sullivan - BirdLife Australia

Co-opted officials
Mike Clarke - UK
Simon Rye - Norway
Alfred D. Chandler III (US)



BirdLife International Advisory Group




Susan Orr  




John S. Adams

James Kushlan

Jane Alexander

Tasso Leventis

Geoff Ball

Tom Lovejoy

Nick Blackwood

Nick Prentice

Nathalie Boulle

Pamela Isdell

Nick Butcher

Gonzalo de Miera Saenz

Alfred D. Chandler III

Hector Morales

Christie Constantine

Benjamin Olewine IV

Sean Dennis

Wendy Paulson (former Chair)

Scott Dresser

Adam Riley

Joe Ellis

Deb Rivel

Warren Evans

Mahima Sukhdev

Dale Forbes

Terry Townshend

John Gregory

Kurt Vogt

Piyush Gupta 

Barbara Young

Pamela Isdell





 Our Executive Team




Director Partnership & Regions

Julius Arinaitwe

Director of Science, Policy & Information 

Melanie Heath

Director of Conservation

Richard Grimmett




Chief Operating Officer

Helen Bull

Director of Communications

Christopher Sands



 Our Regional Directors



Regional Director for Pacific

Margaret West


Regional Director for Africa

Ademola Ajagbe


Regional Director for Middle East

Ibrahim Al-Khader


Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia

Martin Harper

Regional Director for Asia

Vinayagan Dharmarajah

Regional Director for The Americas

Ian Davidson



See also: 

Our Partners - where do we work?

BirdLife's Honorary President

BirdLife Secretariat Finances


Next Page: Our Vision and How We Are Effective