Award for Rhino Poaching song “Till You’re Free Again”

South African songwriter Don Clarke has won the 20th Annual Great American Song Contest with his song “Till You’re Free Again”. His song about the horrors of rhino poaching will be featured on this year’s Hall of Fame. Below is the link to listen to “Till You’re Free Again”, which delivers a heart-wrenching and powerful message about rhinos and their survival. We hope that this song reaches as many people as possible, and puts the plight of the rhinos at the forefront of everyone’s mind. Their time is running out, and we need to act quickly to ensure that future generations have the privilege of experiencing them alive and free.

Click here to watch “Till You’re Free Again” performed by Don Clarke and The Drakondale Girls Choir.

Join the fight to save our rhinos

Join the fight to save our rhinos

Merilyn Cantley

I, Martin Nel and the Bubye Valley Conservancy would like to extend heartfelt condolences to Kennon Cantley for the sudden and unexpected passing of his soulmate Merilyn Cantley on the 10th September 2017 . We would like to take this opportunity to extend our sincere gratitude to the Cantley family for their unwavering support of the Conservation projects within the BVC over the years, even in the face of tragedy. RIP Merilyn, you will be forever remembered.


Renowned Artist John Banovich visits BVC’s lions

Renowned wildlife artist and conservationist John Banovich spent a week at Bubye Valley Conservancy researching lion for his upcoming painting. 

"BVC is perhaps the most successful lion recovery story in modern times. What was once a cattle farm is now one of the top game areas in Zimbabwe. From just 16 lions brought on a few decades ago there are over 500 today which is the densest lion population in Southern Africa.

Well done to Blondie Leathem and his team for making a difference in lion conservation and thank you for sharing the beauty of this place with me. I can not wait to create some epic paintings from BVC!"

- John Banovich, Artist/Conservationist


As well as creating works of art depicting the beauty and diversity of African wildlife, Banovich is a tireless conservationist. Through his career as an artist, Banovich works to promote a deeper understanding of the world and its wildlife, encouraging both conservation efforts and awareness of endangered species. In 2007 he founded the Banovich Wildscapes Foundation, a nonprofit organisation which fosters efforts to conserve wildlife and habitat as well as helping the surrounding communities. The foundation supports twelve projects in seven different countries. A percentage of sales from Banovich limited edition print canvasses benefit the Wildscapes. 

Banovich is passionate about lions and has studied themfor decades. We were delighted that he chose to explore BVC and draw inspiration from our lion, who will be portrayed in a stunning work of art. We spent a week photographing two separate prides and were very lucky to have some spectacular sightings and opportunities to watch them interacting. 

Banovich’s works are celebrated and collected globally, and highlight the importance of protecting wildlife around the world. To explore his works please click here and visit his website.

Artist and Conservationist John Banovich sketches BVC's lions during his visit

Artist and Conservationist John Banovich sketches BVC's lions during his visit

Now more than ever, we need to expand the message about the vital importance of the world’s natural places and utilize the forceful role that artists can leverage in the efforts to conserve them. Through my artwork, I hope to move, reveal and inspire people to seek a deeper understanding of the world around us and bring together groups of individuals to unite on a common ground. Our natural world is severely threatened and with this increased pressure, a new paradigm must emerge...artists, conservationists, sportsmen and environmentalists must come together in areas of overlapping interests.
— John Banovich, Artist/Conservationist

Banovich’s works are celebrated and collected globally, and highlight the importance of protecting wildlife around the world. To explore his works please click here and visit his website.


Photographs by Touran Reddaway

Lights. Cameras. Action: Wildlife and Environment Zimbabwe (WEZ) Photographic Competition

Bubye Valley Conservancy is for the second year running supporting the Wildlife and Environment Zimbabwe (WEZ) Photographic Competition’ for wildlife and photography lovers taking place in November. This program is used as a platform by WEZ members to spread awareness about wildlife and the environment and also gives them a unique opportunity to showcase their photographic talent.

BVC is sponsoring a 5 day / 4 night stay at our Malangani Dam camp as a prize for one of the winners of this year’s photographic competition. Below is a signed copy of the winning 2016 WEZ Photographic Competition, hanging at the Malangani Dam Camp. Yours could be hanging there soon, don’t forget to sign up! 

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Click on the link below to see a full list of photographic categories, prizes and to download your application form:

Bubye Valley Conservancy is a proud sponsor of Wildlife and Environment Zimbabwe (WEZ) 2017 Photographic Competition.


Bubye Valley Conservancy was recently celebrated for its contribution to wildlife conservation. 

Collars donated to Lion Research at BVC

The Lion Research Project here in BVC is entirely reliant on the kind financial and equipment donations from individuals and organisations across the wildlife conservation sphere. Lars Svensson, a loyal supporter of our work, recently donated two new lion collars which will enable us to continue to collect valuable data on lion movements and habitat use. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Lars for his kind donation.

Lion collars enable the researchers at BVC to monitor these animals and gain a better understanding of their movements and habits. This information will ultimately contribute to maintaining balanced ecosystems on BVC.

'Aiden' can be monitored thanks to a donated collar

'Aiden' can be monitored thanks to a donated collar

If you would like to support our conservation effort in any other way, please also get in touch with us by clicking here and filling out our contact form.


Accolade to a wonderful gentleman - Tina Ndou


This amazing, now very old man, Tina Ndou, has been working on what is now
called BVC, which was originally Liebig's Cattle Ranch, then renamed Lemco,
since 1947 !!! He is not exactly sure of his age, or what age he was when he
was first employed on Liebigs, but he says that it was when he first got
facial hair, so probably around 14 or 15 years ? 
He is still working here, an astounding 70 years later, that has to be some
sort of record and puts him at around 85 years old - he has certainly seen
many changes in his lifetime ! He now looks after a 7km stretch of the BVC
game fence, which he not only walks and checks every day, but also clears a
1m strip so no grass etc. touches the electrics on the fence...that is a
14km stint every day. 
When he was asked if he would like to go on retirement and take a well
earned break, he was actually affronted, and asked what we thought he would
do all day ...accolades to this wonderful old gentleman.

                                                     - Article and photographs by Katrina Leathem

Christmas comes (very!) early for the Anti-Poaching team

It has been a busy but successful last few months for the BVC anti-poaching unit. A recent donation of Aimpoint scopes by Lennart Ljungfelt will revolutionize the unit’s effectiveness, giving each scout increased confidence in defending themselves against armed poachers. As we begin this new year, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to all those people who have and continue to support our conservation efforts!


SigfoxRhino Operation

Bubye Valley Conservancy had the pleasure of hosting His Excellency Ambassador Kumar Gupta of Canada and his wife Nadira on a rhino operation implanting tracking devices donated by French company SigFox. Both have become passionate about wildlife since their arrival in Zimbabwe and raise much needed awareness. The Sigfox team also flew out from Paris to install their low power and long range network using solar energy and satellite connectivity to help the Bubye Valley team monitor the rhino more closely.  

Everyone got very involved in helping Natasha and Chap Masterson (vet extraordinaire), resulting in tracking devices fitted into the horns of three rhino. Click on the images below to enlarge them.

With so few left, rhino need a hand. If you would like to help please  click here . 

With so few left, rhino need a hand. If you would like to help please click here

Research Survey


The research team have recently completed the annual road strip counts to estimate the density of prey species across the conservancy. Prior to beginning the survey, we drove a practice transect to train our new spotters Godknows and Micho, who quickly understood their roles and proved to have eagle eyes! Oliver the driver, who has plenty of experience, lead the team ensuring that not even a steenbok was missed!