London Natural History Society The place for wildlife in London

London Natural History Society - The place for wildlife in London


Burgh House



IMG 4857 2016 10 15 Hampstead

First and second images attributed to Burgh House, third image from Wikipedia, fourth image (C) Gehan de Silva.

Images in the header are copyright Gehan de Silva, except the image showing Dominic Couzens.


The role of the members below is to work in pairs at the scheduled London Bird Club talks Programme to meet and introduce speakers and propose a vote of thanks and help in the smooth running of the programme. They are also available to help to handle ad-hoc events to stage talks or a drinks event with visiting scientists, conservationists, photographers, wildlife tourism operators and lodge owners, publishers etc.


1. Georgina Gemmell (LBC Talks Organiser)
Georgina is defined by her life-long passion for the natural world, and an eagerness to ignite this same enthusiasm in others. Her love of sharing knowledge, and inspiring conservation, lead her to pursue a career in wildlife tourism. She is a professional naturalist, and has lead wildlife tours of all manner - from birding and luxury big game safaris- to marine wildlife excursions. Although she grew up in the UK, much of her professional naturalist assignments have been in the tropics – renowned for its biodiversity. She is passionate about community-lead conservation, having co-founded three citizen-science based initiatives studying cetaceans in the Indian Ocean. Her childhood passion has taken her across the globe- from the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest, to the lush tropics of the Indian and South Pacific Oceans.
2. Gabriel Jamie
Gabriel is doing a PhD in the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge. He has had a fascination with the nature, particularly birds, since an early age. His work has led him to do fieldwork on birds around the world including in Romania, Greece, Peru, Ghana, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia. As a teenager growing up in London, he regularly attended London Bird Club meetings. For his PhD he is studying a group of finches called indigobirds which, like many cuckoos, lay their eggs in the nests of other species. For more information about Gabriel’s research please see:
3. Iain Orr
Iain made sure that the natural world and conservation featured in his professional and personal activities in all his Diplomatic Service postings. Hong Kong: Taking down illegal mist nets in the Mai Po marshes, helping set up the HK branch of WWF, China: Setting up several zoological exchanges, Ireland, New Zealand and Ghana: He set up the FCO’s first biodiversity team, negotiated a series of Environment Charters with the UK’s Overseas Territories and managed funding support for the Ascension Island Seabird Restoration Project, cleaning up after an oil-spill disaster in the Galapagos Islands and many other conservation projects. In retirement he maintains a special interest in small islands and their social and natural history and is on the councils of the UK Overseas Territories Conservation Forum and the World Land Trust.
4. Pippa Jacks
Pippa is an award-winning journalist and editor with 11 years’ experience writing about travel and the travel industry. Her personal passion for wildlife and birding has shaped her professional focus wherever possible, fuelling visits to Guyana, Dominica, Sri Lanka, South Africa and the Galapagos in recent years. She is passionate about engaging young people about the natural world, and volunteers for the RSPB’s outreach projects in and around London. Pippa has written for other publications including National Geographic Traveller, and The Telegraph, and regularly appears on TV and radio as a travel expert. As group editor at a travel trade media company, she is also experienced in chairing panels, coordinating conferences, and event marketing.
5. Nirosh Perera
Nirosh is a serious wildlife photographer seen on LNHS walks carrying a camera with a big lens. Having grown up in Sri Lanka, he was fortunate to experienced wildlife varying from big game to endemic birds in rural landscape. He is also a keen birder, who loves to spend his time on bird watching, photography and painting. His passion has taken him to all corners of Sri Lanka, with the intent of finding the rarest of birds. He works in business development for an IT product company, and recently moved to the UK to expand that role. He is now excited at exploring the bird life of Britain and Europe.
6. Sally Middleton
Sally has had a lifelong interest in nature which recently has developed into a passion for birdwatching. She studied Molecular Biology at university and also has an interest in taxonomy. She has made a career working in IT for financial institutions in London. In the last decade, she has worked for some of the biggest global investment banks which are headquartered in continental Europe.
7. Shalmali Rao
Shalmali was born and brought up in the Himalayas into a family of passionate wildlife lovers, conservationists, and assorted eccentrics who chose to call a tent and then a wattle-and-daub hut in the forests of Corbett country their home. Her education included home-schooling under a tree, from where she went on to study in Delhi. Her brief brush with civilization spurred her to abandon its confines to climb mountains alongside her mountaineering heroes. Her mother’s love for birding and taking Shalmali on birding trips along with a childhood in the jungles of Kumaon got her interested in birds and nature. She works for a high-end travel company and is responsible for organising tailored trips ranging from culture to wildlife.
8. Gehan de Silva Wijeyeratne
Gehan has been popularising natural history though his writing and photography. He has pioneered some internationally significant wildlife tourism stories through his field work. Lately, he has been making the case that London can be marketed as a wildlife destination. He has worked in some of the largest financial institutions in the world and is familiar with forging links between corporates and conservation.