Dale Zimmerman is a lifelong naturalist with broad biological interests. Although best known as an ornithologist, he earned three degrees in botany during his days at the University of Michigan. He there met and married Marian Allen, who shared his obsession for wild places and animals, particularly birds. Together for nearly 62 years, they actively sought and photographed the planet's birdlife on each of the seven continents, yet returned again and again to East Africa. Their son, Allan Zimmerman, also is a dedicated naturalist who has travelled extensively with his parents, and now resides in the Sonoran Desert north of Tucson.
Silver City, New Mexico, has served as home base, where for 30 years, he was a professor of Biology at Western New Mexico University. Practicality, plus a nostalgic interest in Mexico's avifauna, dictated residing in the American Southwest, "second best" among the world's places in which to live, from Dale's viewpoint.
Although he finds bird photography more rewarding, he has for years devoted considerable time to bird portraiture. In addition to illustrating, in part, the first edition of Birds of New Guinea (Beehler, Pratt and Zimmerman, Princeton, 1986) and Birds of Kenya and Northern Tanzania (Zimmerman, Turner and Pearson, A & C Black,1996), Dale's artwork has graced many an ornithological journal, coffee mug, t-shirt, and living room wall.
DAZ recording bird songs at sunrise along the Athi River near Kibwezi, Kenya, July 1978