About the British Ornithologists’ Union

Founded in 1858, the BOU is one of the world’s oldest and most respected ornithological organisations with an international membership stretching across all continents.

By joining and supporting us you are supporting the wider global ornithological community.

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Mission statement

The British Ornithologists’ Union will promote ornithological science across the international scientific community, support the individuals who contribute to that science, and grow understanding of that science among a wider community. The BOU mission will be achieved by the following means:

  • Publishing IBIS as a leading international journal of ornithological science.
  • Organising a programme of meetings and conferences.
  • Awarding grants and bursaries for ornithological research.
  • Encouraging liaison between those actively engaged in ornithological research.
  • Providing a representative body of the scientific community, able to provide ornithological information and advice to government and other policy makers.
  • Maintaining and publishing the official list of birds recorded in Britain – The British List.

Our main activities are:

IBIS – international journal of avian science
Publishing papers at the forefront of ornithological research More details . . .

Up to two topical events held each year More details . . .

Grants and bursaries
Funding ornithological research around the world More details . . .

Promoting ornithology on social media
We promote anything ornithological (new papers, conferences, science news stories, etc) on Twitter and Facebook to our active online ornithology community More details . . .

Supporting Early Career Researchers
We support Early Career Researchers (ECRs) to attending BOU conferences, with bursaries and more More details . . .

Member conference attendance grants
Each year we provide travel awards for our members to attend and present their research at the larger international ornithological conferences More details . . .

The British List
The official list of birds in Britain More details . . .

Image credit
Sacred Ibis © A Davey | CC-BY-2.0 via Wikimedia Commons