SANBI has a broad mandate that is primarily derived from NEMBA, but also from other legislation and processes over the past decade. The mandate is to explore, reveal, celebrate and champion biodiversity for the benefit and enjoyment of all South Africans, which includes managing the National Botanical and Zoological Gardens as ‘windows’ to South Africa’s biodiversity for enjoyment and education. 


Biodiversity richness for all South Africans.


To champion the exploration, conservation, sustainable use, appreciation and enjoyment of South Africa’s exceptionally rich biodiversity for all South Africans.


SANBI’s values spell uGREAT. They are:

  • Ubuntu
  • Growth
  • Respect & Tolerance
  • Excellence
  • Accountability
  • Togetherness


blue blooded creatures

Unlike mammals, spiders, snails and octopi have blue blood. This is because the hemocyanin molecule that oxygen is bound to in these animals contains copper, which gives their blood the blue colour