Thursday, December 13, 2018

Experienced Keeper

Experienced Keeper

Greenacres Animal Park

Experienced Keeper required at Greenacres Animal Park, Deeside, North WALES, UK.

Greenacres is a family run animal park, who require a keeper with a minimum of 4 years’ experience with a Zoological background.

Key accountabilities
•        To maintain high standards of animal husbandry
•        To put in place and follow safe working procedures in and around the Animal Park and animal enclosures
•        To continue to expand your knowledge in all areas of welfare and zoo licensing requirements
•        Carry out keeper talks and engage with our guests.
•        To continue to expand your knowledge of the natural history and husbandry of the animals in your care
•        To actively promote and improve the conservation aims of the Animal Park and promote them at every suitable opportunity
•        To ensure you give a positive impression of both yourself and the company to all customers both internal and external
•        Confidently handle and restrain a range of species in a way to minimise stress and risk of injury to all involved.  Risk assessing each situation and guiding inexperienced staff on how to do this safely and correctly
•        To be able to carry out basic healthcare procedures such as hoof trimming, micro chipping, ear tagging and injections on a range of species
•        Be able to deal with emergency situations, such as an animal escape, in a calm, confident manner, taking control of the situation and providing guidance to other staff and volunteers
•        To complete maintenance work around the park as and when required, ensuring the safety of animals, guests and staff
•        Proven record with animal training and positive reinforcement training methods
•        To be observant and communicate with your colleagues and members of the public.  Promote a positive working environment for both staff and volunteers.  Lead the team from the front and provide motivation to ensure good morale amongst all staff both on the wildlife park as well as other departments
•        Provide any necessary staff training required to enable all staff to perform at the expected standard.  Provide any guidance needed whilst allowing them to grow, progress and develop
•        To supervise and encourage all staff members including, work experience, volunteers, seasonal staff and interns on a daily basis in regard to correct husbandry techniques, safety and animal welfare
•        Be well organised, self-motivated with good interpersonal skills
•        Represent and promote the company at external events and be prepared to give presentations on what the farm does, new projects etc
•        Experience of DEFRA licencing, APHA, EHO, & Zoo licencing standards
•        Experience of animal recording systems and standards including movement systems
•        Flexible approach to work and able to work under pressure
•        Good written and spoken English
•        Complete any necessary paperwork required of the role including staff rotas, animal records, risk assessments
•        Handle money and assist in the retail outlets in the park as and when required

•        This position is for 4 days a week, structured over a seven-day week to comply with the needs of the business. It is a requirement that you are available to work all Bank Holidays if the demands of the business require you to do so. You may also be required to work evenings or be called in for emergencies at any time
•        All new employees are on a six-month probationary period unless otherwise stated
•        All employees must be punctual, reliable, honest, and trustworthy, of smart appearance and have a polite and friendly manner towards customers and colleagues and be able to work as part of a team
•        Applicants for this position must be physically fit as the job entails a degree of physical work, often in adverse weather conditions; these include climbing, carrying bales of hay and sacks etc. and must be able to walk for considerable distances, often uphill. They must have good eyesight and hearing and be verbally articulate.  It would be desirable that they are able to read and write to GCSE Grade C pass or have relevant experience
•        All employees must follow health and safety guidelines as well as safe working practices highlight any potential health and safety issues to their manager immediately

Key attributes (attitude, skills, knowledge, experience)
·     Completed DMZAA or equivalent
·     Minimum 4 years employed within a Farm Park / Wildlife Park or Zoo
·     Proven experience of running an animal department or small team and supervising others
·     Experience of Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word and PowerPoint
·     Full driving licence and trailer licence (preferable)
·     Firearms certificate (desirable not essential)

Customer service:
·       Be able to resolve problems as and when possible, deal with enquiries from public and provide the necessary services, strive for a high quality of customer care

Personal skills:
·       Effective communication skills both verbal and written
·       Positive approach to work and colleagues
·       Motivational skills and able to encourage staff responsible for as well as work experience, volunteers etc
·       Maintaining good working relationships with all work colleagues both within the department and throughout the company

The vacancy will remain open until such time when    sufficient applications have been received.

Letters of application, including CV, should be made via email to Andy White, 

no later than the 18th February 2019.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

General Curator

General Curator

Dublin Zoo

Dublin Zoo’s mission is to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature through involvement in conservation and by inspiring passion through education and engaging visitor experiences.

Dublin Zoo is Ireland’s number one family attraction, and welcomes over one million visitors a year

An exciting position has arisen for a General Curator to join the Dublin Zoo team.     This is a key appointment and the successful candidate will have the required experience and vision necessary to help Dublin Zoo maintain and improve its standing in the world zoo community.

Reporting to the Director of Dublin Zoo, the successful candidate will be responsible for delivering the Zoos strategic objectives and overall management for the living collection of animals and plants, conservation, research and veterinary services.

She/he will support the senior staff within these disciplines, maintain and develop interdepartmental communication and continue to provide a high degree of motivation and enthusiasm to allow them to reach their maximum potential.

Administrative duties will include provision of information and updates to the Director, HR, payroll and health and safety records.

The successful candidate must have at least 10 years’ experience in the care and management of living collections in a medium/large sized modern zoological garden/ or wildlife park, including international experience.  5 years’ experience must be in a relevant managerial position and can demonstrate a proven ability to provide leadership and support to skilled teams in a changing environment.

A 3rd level qualification in an appropriate discipline, e.g. Zoology or other wildlife related science, is desirable.

The ideal candidate will have a comprehensive understanding and appreciation of Zoo’s ethics, research, education programs and conservation involvement and be an excellent communicator with the ability to deal with external organisations e.g. Government, non-government, unions, sponsors and media.

Letters of application, including CV, should be made via email to David Casey, MSS Recruitment,  no later than the 18th January 2019.

A full job description is available on request.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Mammal Keeper

Mammal Keeper

Chessington World of Adventures

We are Chessington World of Adventures Resort and we are part of the magical Merlin Entertainments!

We are currently recruiting for a Zoo Keeper for the mammal section; you will be working alongside gorillas, spider monkeys, callitrichids plus many more. The zoo is currently going through a period of growth with exciting developments in the pipeline. In this role you will be working within the Carnivore and Primate teams and take an active role in the day to day running of our awesome collection. This will include delivering unrivalled standards of animal husbandry. You will be part of the team creating the most stimulating environment possible – not just for our guests, but for the animals too - and since we’re big on conservation, education and research, you’ll have a big part to play in that too. You will also be keen to support all areas within our Zoo, which will in turn benefit your own personal development. You will ensure the Health & Safety of self, visitors and guests at all times as well as develop a personal training programme in conjunction with your Head of Section.

We are looking for the following skills and experience;
· Our ideal candidate will have completed an animal based qualification, with a minimum of 2 years’ experience of working with primates in a Zoo environment or equivalent.
· Experience of working with carnivores would be desirable however is not compulsory.
· You will be a confident communicator and more importantly an alert listener.
· You will have passion and excitement for your chosen field, with a keen drive to develop your career as an Animal Keeper.

This role is full time, permanent, averaging 40 hours per week and will include weekends and bank holidays.

Alongside a competitive annual salary and 28 days holiday you can look forward to enjoying a great benefits package  including a Group Personal Pension Plan, Merlin Magic pass, Employee Assistance Programme, Childcare Vouchers, Life Assurance, 25% discount in our retail shops and restaurants, 40% discount online off Lego, and much more!

To submit an application please use this link- 

Closing date for applications is: 4th Jan 2019

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Monday, December 10, 2018

Head of Animals

Head of Animals

Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Since its opening in 2009, Yorkshire Wildlife Park has evolved to become the UK’s number 1 on-foot safari. We feature walkthrough exhibits that take our guests directly into the world of the animals. A dynamic centre for conservation and welfare, the park currently has over 400 animals across more than 70 different species.

We are looking for a Head of Animals who will be responsible for the development, delivery and ongoing management of all commercial activities within the Animal Department. The successful candidate will formulate and implement strategy which aligns the animal department with the group’s commercial objectives, whilst ensuring the continuation of the department’s exemplary standards for animal welfare, health and husbandry, visitor experience and innovation.

Main Duties & Responsibilities:

  •  Budgetary responsibility and overall management of the animal department’s costs.
  •  Ensure synergy and continuity in relation to standards of management across the department.
  •  Coach, develop and motivate the department’s leaders to consistently deliver  exemplary standards for animal welfare, health and husbandry, commercial astuteness, people management practices and visitor experience.
  •  Lead and develop a culture of continuous improvement to meet and exceed departmental KPI’s.
  •  Lead the department to achieve its objectives in relation to in and ex situ conservation programmes. 


  • Commercially astute with an acute attention to detail.
  • Well versed with Microsoft Office, specifically Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
  • Excellent knowledge of the zoo community and relevant legislation.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Strong financial acumen.
  • Standards and quality driven management style. 
  • Must be flexible and able to work during our peak times which include weekends, bank holidays and school holidays.

To download the vacancy information pack and the required application form, please visit the vacancies section of our website

The vacancy will remain open until such time when sufficient applications have been received.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Deputy Curator of Mammals

Deputy Curator of Mammals

Chester Zoo

Permanent - 40 hours per week

We are Chester Zoo, and for over 80 years we’ve been a leading conservation and education charity, and an amazing, award-winning visitor attraction.

We’re also a team of passionate, talented, enthusiastic and expert people, doing everything we can to keep the zoo going, from feeding the animals to discovering new conservation ideas, and giving our 1.9 million visitors an inspirational day out.

We work hard because we love animals, we care about nature, we love Chester Zoo and we want to be the best zoo in the world!

If you think you can help us to achieve that, then we’d love to hear from you.

We currently have an exciting opportunity for a Deputy Curator of Mammals to assist the Curator to lead the mammal collection.

The role:

·  Assist the Curator to oversee all aspects of collection management in line with the Society’s collection plan, (husbandry, diet, exhibits, transfers and health & welfare) in collaboration with other support departments.

·   Assist the Curator in identifying, prioritising and developing conservation, science and educational initiatives within the department in line with the Society’s collection plan and vision, mission and strategic objectives.

·   Supervise and mentor section Team Managers, assist in recruitment, support the Team Managers in the management of their teams, providing individual development and training opportunities ensuring effective performance management.

·   Maintain a safe working environment following the Society's policies and standards on Health & Safety and ensure Safe Working Procedures and Risk Assessments are kept up-to-date and are communicated to all relevant staff.

·   Promote visitor experience and educational impact by improving enclosure design and visitor activities, working closely with Discovery & Learning and Commercial Operations teams.

·   Assist the Curator to oversee the management of departmental operational budgets.

·   Act as a source, where appropriate, of internal and external contact and information for other divisions and external organisations.  Support the provision of marketing and PR materials, reports, articles and information to all levels within the Society. Active liaison and support of external partner organisations.

The successful candidate will have:

·   A higher education qualification in a Zoological related science or equivalent experience

·   Demonstrate leadership qualities and experience of managing a team within a zoo/safari park environment or similar

·   Expert knowledge of the taxonomy, biology and key conservation issues relating to mammals

·   A proven track record in maintaining the highest standards of animal welfare and husbandry

·   Demonstrate an understanding of scientific method and the importance of an evidence based approach to problem solving

·   Experience of working on in situ conservation projects and an understanding of the practicalities of achieving conservation in the field

·   A good working knowledge of the zoo communities – playing an active role in collaborative ex situ species management on a national and regional level

·   Excellent verbal and written communication skills including formal and informal; to include public speaking, chairing meetings, scientific writing and working with the media

·   Experience of efficient and effective budget and resource management

·   A full driving licence valid in the UK

Hours of work are 40 hours per week worked Monday to Friday, with the requirement to work some weekends and Bank Holidays as part of the Duty Curator rota.

The salary for this position is £36,733.78 (this includes our 2019 pay award which is effective from 1st January 2019) per annum and in addition we offer a range of amazing benefits including a defined contribution pension scheme, Medicash Healthcare and free admittance tickets - full details can be found at

Closing date for applications is: 6th Jan 2019

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Experienced Keeper

Experienced Keeper

Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens

Applications are invited for an experienced keeper on the Large Mammal Section of the Park.

The successful applicant will be responsible for assisting in the daily husbandry of the section and will work in close co-operation with the Section Head and their staff towards the continuous development of the section – which includes ungulate and large carnivore species. They will be expected to undertake all relevant aspects of work in a progressive animal collection. Assisting in the presentation of educational talks is essential.

A minimum of 5 years experience with Large Mammal species, including large carnivores, is essential. Applicants will need to demonstrate good communication skills, be self-motivated, and able to lead and work as part of a team. Possession of a relevant animal management qualification is desired and a full driving licence is essential for this position.

In return we offer a competitive salary, free accommodation, and a non-contributory pension scheme.

Closing date

Please send a current CV with a covering letter to:

Jamie Craig
Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens,
OX18 4JP

Closing date Friday 4th January 2019

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant