Lindy Rodwell (born 13 February 1962 in Johannesburg) is a South African zoologist and conservationist who dedicated herself to ensuring viable wetland habitat and population sizes for the cranes of Africa south of the Sahara, namely the endangered Blue Crane and Grey-crowned Crane and the critically endangered Wattled Crane.
Lindy Rodwell was awarded a BSc(Zoology) and a Higher Diploma in Education from the University of Cape Town. She served a five-month internship with the International Crane Foundation in Baraboo, Wisconsin, United States. Then, while working at a bird park in South Africa, she became aware that she could make a greater contribution to wildlife by becoming involved in local and global conservation politics. She became Africa programme coordinator for the South African Crane Working Group of the Endangered Wildlife Trust.
Due to Rodwell's efforts over the past decade, the future for Blue and Grey-crowned Cranes is beginning to look more secure within South Africa. However, beyond South Africa’s borders, Wattled Cranes range across ten countries: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Angola, Ethiopia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Each has its particular hazards for cranes. She believes that cranes are sensitive indicators of the health of wetland systems and streams issuing from them, and that the well-being of many species, including ourselves, is intimately linked to this issue. Therefore, she believes, the responsibility for reclamation and conservation of these systems rests squarely on humanity's shoulders. She eschews an adversarial attitude and prefers educational efforts and sensible collaboration with farmers and farm workers; developers; construction companies; and authorities, both local and national.
In 2003, to devote more time to her family, she handed over leadership of the African Wattled Crane Programme to Kerryn Morrison, who is working in a new formal partnership between the International Crane Foundation and the Endangered Wildlife Trust.
Rodwell is currently a Trustee of both the Endangered Wildlife Trust and the World Wildlife Fund, and devotes much of her time to the Nature's Valley Trust (NVT), a non-governmental organization that she founded with her husband, James van Hasselt. The NVT has become a driving force for conservation along the Garden Route.
- 1999 Whitley Gold Award Winner
- 2002 Whitley Continuation Award Winner
- 2002 Environment Award in Rolex Awards for Enterprise
- Blue Cranes Feature at Sasol Scifest 2002