Four Corners biodiversity information project (2003-2004)

The Society, with its BFA partners undertook a biodiversity evaluation and information dissemination exercise for the African Wildlife Foundation’s “Four Corners” transboundary project. Centred on Victoria Falls and Livingstone towns, the Four Corners area encompasses four countries and includes the Okavango Delta, Chobe, Victoria Falls, Hwange and South Kafue National Parks. Biodiversity data was gathered, interpreted and packaged in user-friendly formats for planners, policy-makers, NGOs, academics and media in the region with the aim of influencing development decision-making to take biodiversity values into account.

“Four Corners” Biodiversity Information Packs available:

No 1: Introductory Biodiversity InformationDownload pdf here…

No 2: Summary of Technical Reviews Download pdf here…

No 3: Biodiversity Planning Manual – Download pdf here…

Cahora Bassa Zoning – Zambezi Basin Initiative (1998-2000)

The Zambezi Society, having established a working partnership with a well-known British-based conservation organisation, Flora and Fauna International (FFI) embarked on a basin-wide conservation programme entitled the Zambezi Basin Initiative together with FFI and the Biodiversity Foundation for Africa. The pilot phase of this study was directed at the Cabora Bassa/Zambezi Valley trans-border area, where the borders of Zimbabwe Zambia and Mozambique meet.

See Publications page for download…


Dry Forest Study (2001)

The Zambezi Society undertook a study of selected rare and threatened “dry forest” (jesse bush) sites in Northern Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Valuable data on the biodiversity and ecological condition of these isolated vegetation patches was collected and recommendations made for their future conservation.

See Publications page for download…


Elephant Monitoring Project (1999-2001)

The Zambezi Society attached radio-tracking collars to 18 elephants in Muzarabani and Guruve Districts of northern Zimbabwe and monitored their movements on the Zimbabwe/ Mozambique border. Valuable information was gathered on the behaviour of this shared population. This enabled the Society a) to make recommendations to the districts on managing their elephant resource, including maintaining an elephant movement corridor identified by the research; b) to help the authorities in both countries develop a collaborative cross-boundary elephant management strategy.

See Publications page for download…

Wetlands Biodiversity Evaluation (1997-2000)

The Zambezi Society working in partnership with the Biodiversity Foundation for Africa (BFA), undertook an evaluation of the biodiversity value of four wetland areas along the Zambezi River – the Barotseland Floodplains in Zambia, the Chobe/Linyanti area of Botswana/Namibia, the Lower Shire in Malawi and the Zambezi Delta in Mozambique. This activity was part of the World Conservation Union (IUCN)’s wider Zambezi Basin Wetlands Conservation and Resource Utilisation Programme.

See Publications page for download…

Sites of Botanical Interest (1995-2000)

The Zambezi Society formed a partnership with The Biodiversity Foundation for Africa (BFA) in identifying 80 sites of high botanical interest within the Zambezi valley. Twenty of these were prioritised for urgent conservation action and the Society worked with local communities to develop ways of using the natural resources within these areas as an incentive to conserve them.

See Publications page for download…

Cheetah Trans-location (1992-1994)

The Society aided the Zimbabwe Parks & Wildlife Management Authority in the experimental translocation of 15 “problem” cheetah from farmland in Zimbabwe’s Lowveld to the Matusadona National Park. Over a three-year period these animals were released into the Park, after being held for several weeks in a natural “boma” specially-constructed with funds provided by local tour operators, The Zambezi Society and international donors. The Society then began a research and monitoring programme for these animals.

Cheetah survey Part 1 (1998)
An initial assessment of the success of the Zambezi Society’s cheetah re-introducation project in the Matusadona National Park in Zimbabwe, four years after it was completed, was undertaken by Gianetta Purchase. The study concluded that although the existing population of cheetahs was viable and the translocation had been a success, an increase in the cheetah population to more than 25 was unlikely because of restrictions in the availability of suitable habitat and the high density of lions in the Park.

Cheetah survey Part 2 (2004-2005)
A second follow-up survey of the cheetah re-introduced into the Matusadona National Park in Zimbabwe between 1992 and 1994 was undertaken by Dr Gianetta Purchase. The results showed that a viable cheetah population of some 20 animals has been successfully established within the Park as a result of the translocation, and that the surrounding human communities have not suffered any adverse effects.


Community Conservation

Community natural resource management (1988-2000)
The Zambezi Society became involved in a CAMPFIRE project in Muzarabani District in the northern Zambezi valley in order to gain some experience in rural community resource management. The Society assisted with the formation of the Mavuradonha Wilderness Area, over 500 sq. kms. of valuable Zambezi escarpment flora and fauna – the only protected area which lies within communal land and is administered by the local community. The Society was instrumental in sourcing funds for a variety of community wildlife management projects in this area many of which sought to address the elephant/human conflict issue. The Society extended its community work into neighbouring Guruve District, and into the Tete Province of Mozambique across the international border. The Society’s involvement in community work in this area was scaled down in 2000 when political instability in the area made it difficult to continue.

Community eco-tourism initiative (2001)
The Zambezi Society assisted Guruve and Muzarabani rural district councils in Northern Zimbabwe to develop a joint initiative for eco-tourism in their districts, with the aim of encouraging conservation by increasing the benefits to communities from valuable natural and archaeological resources.


International Action

Inputs to CITES (1996-2000)
The Zambezi Society undertook an extensive consultation exercise with its membership in order to establish a firm position at the CITES COP 10 held in Harare, Zimbabwe in 1997. The Society took part in the conference as a registered observer, supported the Zimbabwe government in its successful call for the downlisting of the elephant to Appendix II, and was able to make the views of its members known to all international delegates. The Society maintains its seat on the Zimbabwe CITES technical committee and continues to liaise with the Zimbabwean government and the Parks Authority on CITES issues.

7th World Wilderness Congress (2001)
At the invitation of the US-based WILD Foundation, the Zambezi Society attended the 7th World Wilderness Congress held in Port Elizabeth, South Africa and presented a paper entitled: The Zambezi River: Wilderness and Tourism.

8th World Wilderness Congress (2004)
Again at the invitation of the WILD Foundation, the Zambezi Society attended the 8th World Wilderness Congress in Alaska with a team of community representatives from Tete Province in Mozambique. An ambitious Biosphere Reserve land planning exercise is planned for this important area, and the Mozambicans had the opportunity to outline this plan to the congress, learn from their exposure at the Congress and benefit from a pre-Congress wilderness training course.

4th IUCN World Conservation Congress (2008)
The Zambezi Society Director attended this congress in Barcelona as part of the Zimbabwe delegation at the invitation of IUCN.

International Visitor Leadership Programme (2009)
The Zambezi Society Director visited the USA for six weeks as part of a training programme on the theme of Parks, Biodiversity and Ecotourism Management.

Zambezi Society joins ATTA’s African Charity Campaign (2010)
The Society was listed in the African Charity Campaign of the African Travel and Tourism Association network.

Zambezi Society (UK) (1993-2007)
The Zambezi Society established a branch in the United Kingdom known as The Zambezi Society (UK) with UK Registered Charity status. Staffed only by dedicated volunteers, this branch undertook many successful fund-raising and awareness initiatives and provided valuable support to the Society’s projects and activities in the Zambezi Basin. The organisation split away from the Zambezi Society in 2008 and became Conservation Zambezi.