ZSL's Prince Philip Zoological Library & Archives contains a unique collection of resources on zoology and animal conservation.
ZSL Prince Philip Zoological Library & Archives is open by appointment 10.30am to 5pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays only.
UPDATE Christmas News: Wednesday 15 December is the last day we will be open in 2021. We will reopen on Tuesday 4 January when we will welcome back visitors.
We are gradually reopening and welcoming a limited number of visitors by appointment only.
Please email email@example.com 24 hours in advance to make an appointment to visit so we can reserve a desk for you. If you plan to consult any of our 'special collections' i.e. Archives, historic books or art works, then please email a week before.We can then arrange to retrieve material ready for your visit.
Although some restrictions have been lifted our priority is to keep you and our staff safe so would appreciation you complying with some safety measures.
Please use a face mask when entering the building and while moving around the building, unless you are exempt.
Please also wash your hands on arrival. We are asking our visitors to wash hands regularly rather than use handgel which may cause damage to our collections.
You may remove you face mask when sitting at a Library desk but please wear it again when moving around the Library.
Please also keep a distance from other Library visitors and Library staff.
This is available 24/7 and contains links to relevant online resources as well as listing our holdings: ZSL Library Catalogue
Services to ZSL students and ZSL Fellows.
‘Click and collect’ book loans
If you wish to borrow books but do not want to make an appointment to visit ZSL Library & Archives. Please check our online catalogue for books you wish to borrow ZSL Library Catalogue and email details to firstname.lastname@example.org. Collection details will be provided when we email confirming the items are available for loan.
If you have borrowed books from us already, we will automatically renew the loan period.
If you wish to return any borrowed items and do not wish to make an appointment to visit ZSL Libary & Archives, please put them in an envelope or bag and hand in at the East Service Gate which is located opposite the ZSL Main Offices, Outer Circle, Regent’s Park, NW1 4RY.
Please mark the envelope/bag for the attention of ZSL Library and write the date you have returned the item on the package so that we can quarantine returns for 72 hours.
Returned items can be left at the East Service Gate 10am to 3.30pm Monday to Friday only.
Scan and Send
Scans for non-commercial use can be made from printed items held in ZSL Library, including book chapters and journal articles, in compliance with copyright regulations. There is a charge of 30p per page. Please ensure that we have the item you want by checking our online ZSL Library Catalogue then email email@example.com with details of the item you wish us to scan. See also Document supply and copying services.
If you are unable to use our ‘click and collect’ service or visit, books can be posted to you via ‘Special Delivery’, costs vary depending on the size of book, from £8 to £25. Please check our online catalogue for the book you wish to borrow then email firstname.lastname@example.org with the details.
Founded in 1826, ZSL's Prince Philip Zoological Library & Archives is one of the major zoological libraries in the world and is open to all. For access details please see 'Who can use the Library?'
ZSL Library contains a wide range of books and journals on all types of animals and their conservation. It has:
Free wireless internet access is available in ZSL Library. To connect your laptop to the wireless network you simply need to request a password from the Library desk (the password will be changed on a monthly basis).
Prejvalsky's (sic) horse. Sketched in the park at Woburn / J. Smit. 1901
Founded in 1826, the ZSL Library & Archives has amassed one of the most extensive zoological collections in the world.
Every month one of the pieces held in ZSL Library & Archives, ZSL London and at ZSL Whipsnade Zoos will feature here as ‘Artefact of the Month’, helping you to discover the historical wonders that ZSL has to offer.
Tuesday and Wednesday 10.30am-5pm only by appointment.
ZSL Library is closed on all public holidays, Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and at weekends.
Please email email@example.com 24 hours in advance to make an appointment to visit so we can reserve a desk for you.
If you plan to consult any of our 'special collections' i.e. Archives, historic books or art works, then please email a week before.We can then arrange to retrieve material ready for your visit.
Access to ZSL Library & Archives
ZSL Library & Archives is open to all, however members of the public must register for a reference ticket (this can be done on the first day that you plan to use the Library). Please refer to 'who can use the Library' for details
Fellows of ZSL and ZSL Members are welcome to use ZSL Library & Archives. Please see 'who can use the Library' for details
If you plan to visit ZSL Library with a group of four or more people, please contact us in advance at firstname.lastname@example.org , on 0207 449 6293 or via our online enquiry/feedback form
Library users below the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult at all times when visiting ZSL Library.
Finding ZSL Library & Archives
ZSL Library is in the Zoological Society of London's main office building, situated on the Outer Circle of Regent's Park, approximately 200 yards East of ZSL London Zoo's main gate and adjacent to the ZSL Meeting Rooms.
Free wireless internet access is available in ZSL Library. To connect your laptop to the wireless network you simply need to request a password from the Library desk (the password will be changed on a weekly basis).
Please ask Library staff for further details when you visit ZSL Library.
Library information for Fellows and Members
Are you a Fellow or a member of ZSL? Find out more about visiting the library and upcoming tours here.
Important points to note
applications to consult 'special collections i.e. historic books, archives and art works should be made a week in advance
school students under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult while visiting ZSL Library
please bring your Fellowship or Membership card with you when you visit or proof of address and photo identification if you are member of the public visiting ZSL Library for the first time.
ZSL Library is accessed via two flights of stairs. If you are not able to use the stairs please let us know in advance of your visit so we can provide assistance. We do have access via a lift. The lift is 65cm wide and 120cm deep but if you need to use this, please do contact us in advance.
ZSL Library is usually open to all - please see below for access details and limitations on usage.
Please email email@example.com to make an appointment to visit. We are open on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Members of the public who are not members of ZSL or the RES may request a Library reference ticket. Please note that you will be able to use the Library for reference only. No books may be removed.
Please bring proof of your address and photo identification with you on the day that you wish to join the Library: this is necessary even for day tickets. You will be asked to complete an application form on your first visit and a ticket will then be posted to your home address.
If you do not bring the identification detailed above you will be refused access to the Library
If you plan to visit ZSL Library with a group of four or more people, a please contact us in advance at firstname.lastname@example.org , on 0207 449 6293 or via our online enquiry/feedback form
Library users below the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult at all times when visiting ZSL Library
Founded in 1826, the ZSL Library has amassed one of the most extensive zoological collections in the world.
Every month one of the pieces held in ZSL’s Library, ZSL London and at ZSL Whipsnade Zoos will feature here as ‘Artefact of the Month’, helping you to discover the historical wonders that ZSL has to offer.
Most books in our collection published before 1860
ZSL Archives - see note below.
ZSL Artwork collection
Links to relevant online resources
For books published before 1993 it is advisable to check both this catalogue and the card catalogue in the Library Reading Room. We are currently adding details of all books in the Library, please see details of this project below.
Our art works have been catalogued with funding from the Michael Marks Trust. Artworks and artefacts are not all listed individually, some are listed as collections.
The catalogue contains a limited number of records for the ZSL Archives, if you cannot find what you want please check with our Archivist by emailing email@example.com .
If you experience any problems with the catalogue please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Retrospective Book Cataloguing Project
ZSL Library is pleased to announce that all the books within its Reading Room have been added to the online catalogue. A Retrospective Book Cataloguing Project commenced in Summer 2010 after a generous bequest by former staff member, Connie Nutkins.
For many years ZSL Library has had a large gap in its online catalogue, where books published between 1860 and 1993 could only be located via the physical card catalogue located in the Library’s Reading Room. The limited access to the Library catalogue meant that many researchers were not aware of the items held in this unique collection. It had been hoped to for some time that a cataloguing project would help widen access to the Library, and it was only after Connie’s kind bequest that the project became a reality.
By the end of Autumn 2014 all the books in the Reading Room had systematically been added to the Library’s online catalogue, with the benefit of not only increasing access to the collection, but also giving Library staff an opportunity to perform a thorough stock check and perform conservation reports.
This was a key project in helping ZSL to deliver the strategic aim of facilitating access to zoological and conservation knowledge.
Thanks must go to staff and volunteers who have worked so hard on this project, and a special thank you to the late Connie Nutkins who made the project possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
The following questions and answers should help you to make effective use of our catalogue.