Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Long-term volunteer placements

Role: Long-term volunteer placements
Nestled between the coastal village of Combe Martin and the stunning wild landscapes of Exmoor, Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park is an award winning zoo and family attraction.

The Role:
We are now accepting applications for 2018 long term volunteer placements. We are offering placements on our sea lion, primate and carnivore sections. These placements offer participants the opportunity to work alongside experienced animal keepers. These placements would be ideal for anyone wishing to pursue a career in the zoo industry.

The Person:
Applicants must be aged 18 or over and be able to commit to a placement for 1-6 months. Applicants should be able to demonstrate an enthusiasm for animal welfare and conservation, be highly motivated and eager to learn.

How to apply:

Please send a current CV and covering letter to and indicate which dates you are interested in undertaking your placement.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Zoo Keeper

Zoo Keeper

Vacancy: Zoo Keeper

Position Type: Full time (upon successful completion of probation period).

Start Date: Immediate start required - December 2017.

Closing Date: December 2017 - Until sufficient applications have been received.

Salary & Staff Benefits: We offer a competitive salary based on age and experience. Staff benefits include a pension scheme and a staff discount scheme.

We are looking for a responsible and dedicated individual to join our team as a full time Zoo Keeper. The role involves daily care for a diverse collection which includes: Cuban hutia, red-rumped agouti, Grants zebra, fossa, red kangaroo, zorilla, raccoon dog, African spoonbill, rainbow lorikeets, Fiji iguana, tortoise and frogs. This role also includes animal encounter outreach including school visits, home visits and events.
The successful individual will need to be engaging, confident, approachable and keen to learn new skills whilst focusing on animal welfare, record keeping and visitor engagement.

The Role Involves:
·         Day to day husbandry of all animals.
·         Diet preparation.
·         Animal observation and record keeping.
·         Public talks and show.
·         Stock taking and ordering.
·         Animal enrichment and training.
·         Assistance with veterinary care when needed.
·         Maintaining high standards around the park including emptying bins, sweeping, weeding and window cleaning.
·         Strict adherence to safe working practices.
·         Working effectively as an individual and as part of a small team.

We are looking for someone who has:
·         Experience of working with a range of exotic animals in a zoo environment.
·         Relevant animal husbandry qualifications.
·         High levels of flexibility and resilience in order to respond to daily challenges across a wide range of areas.
·         Good written and communication skills.
·         Excellent time-keeping and time management.
·         Full clean UK or EU driving licence.

Working Conditions:
·         Largely outdoor work in all weather conditions.
·         Occasional early and late working will be required to accommodate deadlines or special events.
·         Position includes working weekends, bank holidays and school holidays.
·         Work will be across two sites based in Ware, Hertfordshire and Enfield, Middlesex.

How to apply:

Please send your CV and a cover letter by email to detailing what role you have applied for and your suitability for the position.  

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Intern Field Assistants Required – Islands Restoration Programme

Intern Field Assistants Required – Islands Restoration Programme

Project background The Mauritian Wildlife Foundation (MWF), has been working on and restoring island biodiversity for the past thirty years. The focus has been towards removing invasive species, replanting native vegetation, monitoring and reintroducing threatened bird and reptile species.

The position We are looking for highly self-motivated and conscientious individuals to assist with work on the offshore islands within our project teams to:
  • support plant, reptile and seabird restoration and research on Round Island;
  • ensure island biosecurity is maintained and to remove emergent threats caused by invasive species introductions;
  • assist when required, our reptile projects (skinks, geckos, snakes, tortoises) for the monitoring of island populations, assisting with reptile translocations and headstarting of young reptiles for release;
  • support the maintenance of island infrastructure, such as equipment, enclosures, field stations etc.

Due to the nature of working on islands, the hours worked will be irregular and at times will involve working nights, weekends and public holidays, with up to a month spent on an island at a time. Training and guidance from the Islands Restoration teams will be given. The work will involve the capture, handling and release of wild animals. Accurate data collection/entry and reporting are a necessity. Interns will be expected to talk to tourists/visitors about the restoration work and assist in training of staff, students and research projects.

Requirements Applicants will need to:
  • Have gained a BSc in the biological sciences
  • Demonstrate a keen interest in conservation and wildlife
  • Be physically fit for working in tough remote conditions and able to stay focused on repetitive work
  • Be ready to adapt to unforeseen circumstances with initiative and due care
  • Have good written and spoken English
  • Have a sound knowledge of spreadsheet applications and data management
  • Preferably have a driving license for car and/or motorbike
  • Preferably be able to swim and have first aid certification

Individuals will need to commit for a six-month period from March 2018. They would be required to pay for their own return airfare and must have comprehensive insurance cover (including repatriation) for the duration of their stay. Accommodation and transport between MWF sites will be provided and the intern will need approximately £200 per month to cover their own costs for food (on and off the islands), socialising and personal items. Personal equipment needs are basic (eg work clothes, sturdy boots, sun protection, reliable watch, LED head torch, thin sleeping bag and/or bed sheet, mosquito net, mobile phone).

To apply: please send a CV (resume) and a covering letter (with the word ‘Islands’ followed by your surname and initials at the start of each file name), by email to:

The selection process will involve short-listing and a Skype interview for the short-listed candidates with senior Islands Restoration Staff. Closing date for applications: 17th December 2017.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Qualified Keeper – Pinnipeds

Qualified Keeper – Pinnipeds

Permanent position working 80 hours per fortnight
Salary £18,217 per annum

The Animal Department at Bristol Zoo Gardens has a vacancy for a pinniped keeper. This is a permanent position working 80 hours per fortnight as part of the departmental 14 day roster which will include weekends and bank holidays.

The successful applicant will have experience of working in a zoo environment and must have very good knowledge of pinniped husbandry and training. Holding a minimum PADI rescue diver (or equivalent) qualification would also be an advantage, but not essential.
All applicants must hold either a relevant degree plus have experience working in a recognised animal collection with pinnipeds, or hold the Diploma in the Management of Zoo and Aquarium Animals (DMZAA).   

To apply for this position please e-mail a covering letter and full CV to:  

The closing date for applications is Friday 8 December at 2pm.
Interviews will be held on Friday 15th December.

Bristol Zoo Gardens reserves the right to close this vacancy early.  Due to the expected number of applications we will only be contacting those shortlisted for interview.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Great Apes Keeper | Auckland Zoo and Orana Park

Great Apes Keeper | Auckland Zoo and Orana Park

Auckland Zoo is recognised as one of the most progressive zoos in the world.  A winner of national and international environmental-related awards, it is home to 126 different species and over 1,000 animals.

Our collection of Bornean orangutans are on the move!  During our two year redevelopment programme, our three orangutans, Charlie, Melur and Wanita, will be rehoused in Orana Park, Christchurch.  Orana Park is home to New Zealand's only gorillas, and your primary focus will be to care for these two species, providing best practice husbandry, contributing to the understanding of these species and provide exciting visitor experiences, which inspire and empower people to take positive action for wildlife and the environment.

You will be located at Orana Park for the first two years (approximately), and once the redevelopment is complete, you and the orangutans will relocate to Auckland Zoo.

Learn more HERE

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Experienced Large Mammal Keeper

Experienced Large Mammal Keeper

Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens

An exciting opportunity has arisen for an Experienced Keeper on the Large Mammal Section of the Park.

The successful applicant will be responsible for assisting in daily husbandry and will work in close co-operation with the Section Head and their team to ensure the continuous development of the section. They will be expected to undertake research projects, nutritional studies, enrichment and all relevant aspects of work in a progressive animal collection. Participating in the presentation of educational talks is required.

A minimum of 5 years experience with a wide variety of Large Mammal species, including Rhino and Large Carnivores in a zoological environment 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, and a full driving licence are required for this position.

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

Closing date: 15th December 2017

Please send a current CV together with a covering letter to:

Jamie Craig
Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens,
 OX18 4JP

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant