Friday, June 28, 2019

Cover Animal keeper

Cover Animal keeper

Salary commensurate with experience, plus a living out allowance

Howletts & Port Lympne Wild Animal Parks, in conjunction with the Aspinall Foundation, are a charity based organisation committed to protecting rare and endangered animals from extinction through captive breeding and reintroduction programmes. The parks are home of one of the world’s most prized wild animal collections and are one of the biggest visitor attractions in Kent.

The Aspinall Foundation is a registered charity that is actively involved with several projects incorporating a diverse range of conservation activities both at their Kent based Howletts Wild Animal Park and Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve and overseas projects in the Congo, Gabon, Indonesia and Madagascar. Over the past few years alone, we have released Back to The Wild a range of animals including 8 black rhino, 49 Javan langurs, 9 Javan gibbon, 11 European bison and over 60 western lowland gorillas back to their natural habitat.

We are currently looking for an enthusiastic and motivated individual to join our team of dedicated keepers at Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve. The ideal candidate will have experience of working with animals, in a mainstream zoological collection and an awareness of current conservation issues and a passion for animal welfare. The successful candidate will be working with a variety of species, main duties will involve:

·       observing the behavior, health and security of animals and reporting any problems to the Section Head
  • Preparation of approved diets and carrying out the correct feeding procedures.
  • Cleaning and maintaining enclosures as well as adjacent working areas.
  • Ensuring that safety and emergency procedures are followed at all times.
  • Working with power tools and machinery.

This is a physically demanding position, so candidates must have a good level of physical fitness. A full valid driving licence is essential to the role. Experience with telehandlers, mini diggers etc is advantageous.  Ideally you will possess good all-round animal husbandry skills and be enthusiastic in contributing to the enrichment of the various species around the park.

This role is 40 hours a week working 5 days out of 7 including weekends and bank holidays, the successful candidate will have a genuinely flexible approach to working hours. All applicants must have right to work in the UK.

Closing date: Monday 8 July 2019

To apply: Please email a CV along with a covering letter to -

Or post to: Human Resources, Port Lympne Wild Animal Park, Lympne, Hythe, Kent, CT21 4PD

Visit our website at for further information.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Animal Keeper – Primates

Animal Keeper – Primates

Based in the heart of England, Twycross Zoo (TZ) is an award-winning conservation charity and rapidly growing visitor attraction. We’re committed to supporting global welfare and conservation efforts in the captive breeding of endangered species whilst supporting projects from many different countries around the world, including Ape Action Africa, Lola Ya Bonobo and the FFI Cao Vit Gibbon Project.

In 2014, we launched our 20-year, £55million Masterplan. Since this time, new habitats which have opened to the public include Giraffe Savannah and Gibbon Forest. Recently, we’ve opened a new
£3.5 million world-class chimpanzee habitat, Chimpanzee Eden, and are looking forward to building on this continued growth and success. Renowned as a specialist primate zoo, we care for a wide variety of monkeys and apes, and we are the only zoo in the UK to accommodate all four Great Apes.

What will this role of Animal Keeper entail?

As a Primates Animal Keeper, you’ll play a key role in caring for the animals in the Primates section of Twycross Zoo working with everything from Gibbons through to Marmosets, ensuring that animal keeping is carried out to the Zoo’s required standards. Your duties will include but not be limited to;

·       Preparing and distributing food and water to animals
·       Assisting with the capture and restraint of animals when required
·       Learning about the animals and reporting any animal health concerns to the Section Head
·       Assisting with maintaining enclosures, food preparation and public viewing areas to a high standard of hygiene, cleanliness and exhibition
·       Motivating and encouraging colleagues, and assisting with the development of Trainee Keepers and providing guidance to work experience students and apprentices
·       Answering enquiries from the public in a helpful and polite manner

What will I need to be considered for this Animal Keeper vacancy?

·       At least 5 years’ experience of animal keeping, along with an appropriate animal related qualification (or willing to work towards)
·       Superb knowledge of animals and all responsible work practices relevant to zoonotic diseases
·       A passion for the Zoo’s work and purpose
·       Willing to be trained as a first aider and to be on call as part of the Zoo's first aid duty rota
·       A flexible approach to duties and working hours

Please note, whilst Twycross Zoo is an equal opportunities employer, the successful applicant will need to be physically fit due to the nature and demands of the role.

What will I receive in return?

As an Animal Keeper you’ll receive a salary of £20,089 per annum, along with fantastic additional benefits including 31 days holiday per annum (inclusive of bank holidays), along with the benefit of a staff membership card, giving you free entry to the Zoo on your days off and discounts in our retail and food outlets. Free onsite parking.

Contract: Permanent, working average of 43 hours over 5 days out of 7 between the hours of 8am to 5pm during the winter months, and 8am to 6pm for the remainder of the year.

More about us:

You’ll be part of an evolving and progressive organisation, with staff engagement at its very core. Our team strives to educate and inspire everyone to care about, and therefore contribute to saving, the other species with which we share our planet.

With our dedicated and enthusiastic team of colleagues at the heart of everything we do, we aim to become a recognised “Centre of Excellence” that continues to make a significant contribution to the welfare and conservation of animals, especially primates, and remain at the heart of conservation.

Location: Atherstone, Warwickshire (on the A444, which is easily accessed via the A5 and the M42 Junction 11).

To apply for this position, please head over to, where you will be able to select this role and submit your CV for consideration.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

Bird Keeper

Job Title
Keeper, Harewood Bird Garden[CS1] 
Responsible to
Bird Garden & Farm Experience Manager
Responsible for
Students, Volunteers
Contract type
40 hours per week, working 5 days over 7
£17,076.80 per annum
Closing date
Monday 22nd July 2019 (midnight)
Week commencing 29th July 2019

About Harewood
Harewood House Trust is the charity that manages and maintains Harewood House and its immediate environs, by opening to the public as a visitor attraction and events venue which attracts in excess of 200,000 visitors a year.

Harewood House is one of England’s finest 18th century country houses, with a magnificent collection of fine and decorative arts. It is an accredited museum and nationally designated collection, and is the family seat of the Earl and Countess of Harewood.

As an educational charitable trust, Harewood’s key objectives are:

·       To preserve for the benefit of the public the House, Gardens and Collections
·       To promote the study and appreciation of the arts and sciences
·       To provide facilities for recreation.

Alongside the care, conservation and interpretation of the core collection, Harewood runs a series of innovative exhibitions of contemporary as well as historic art.

Harewood also has a commercial arm that manages the commercial operation including the visitor event programme, major outdoor events, conferences, weddings and corporate functions. It is also responsible for fine dining, the cafes and other retail food outlets throughout the site.  

Main purpose of role

To actively participate in maintaining the Bird Garden and Farm Experience as part of a quality visitor attraction which promotes a greater awareness of the natural world and its conservation.  Ensuring the highest standards of welfare for the animals and the care of enclosures, and their surroundings.

Key Result Areas
·       Care of the animals, enclosures and surroundings to the highest possible standard
·       Ensure all animals are appropriately fed and watered at the times laid down in current guidelines
·       Ensure a proactive approach to appropriate environmental enrichment is undertaken for all species on relevant departments
·       Check the condition of stock at least twice daily throughout the day.
·       Check the condition of enclosures daily to ensure they are sound, including fixtures and fittings and report any faults immediately
·       Collect and report accurately all relevant animal information on a daily basis.  Keep accurate records of section/s you are responsible for on the appropriate forms.
·       List all drugs used on relevant drug sheets
·       Pass on all relevant information to the Bird Garden and Farm Experience Manager and/or your colleagues on a daily basis
·       Seek information from staff to extend your knowledge of the animals within the Bird Garden
·       Ensure all enclosure ponds are cleaned at least once a week
·       Ensure all interpretation labels are current and clean and liaise with the Engagement Department on the production of new and replacement labels
·       Ensure all enclosures are kept neat and tidy with grass cut and shrubs pruned
·       Use all machinery, equipment, plant and services in a safe manner and in accordance with any written instructions and immediately report any faults to your Line Manager
·       Show flexibility in your working rota to ensure adequate staffing levels
·       Commitment to continuing professional development.  This may involve undertaking the Diploma in the Management of Zoo & Aquarium Animals or equivalent within 18 months of starting the post
·       Assist in the training, development and motivation of trainees, volunteers, and students working within the Bird Garden
·       Participate in interdepartmental cooperation at operating level, including the attendance at any meetings
·       Follow Best Practice Guidelines as set out by relevant bodies and implemented within the Department
·       Comply with all statutory laws and regulations
·       Liaise formally with the Bird Garden Curator[CS2]  on your progress within the position:
·       Display a level of personal presentation which reflects the agreed image of the Bird Garden, including the wearing of any uniform which may be issued.
·       Ensure a compliance with zoo licensing legislation is met 

General Responsibilities
·       A commitment to equal opportunities and health and safety
·       Actively contribute to the successful achievement of departmental and charity-wide goals
·       Adhere to all Harewood House Trust policies and procedures
·       Carry out any other duties as reasonably requested
·       Actively embody the charity’s values: friendly, not remote; engaging, not aloof; warm,  not cold;  spririted, not strict; generous, not mean; delightful, not demure; courageous, not timid; relevant, not stagnant

Special Considerations
Hours are worked according to a shift pattern five days over seven.  Some heavy lifting is required.

Person Specification

E = Essential, D = Desirable

Experience in a zoological collection
A relevant qualification in a zoological collection
The ability to show initative
Flexible approach to working days and hours
Methodical approach to record keeping
Commitment to continual professional development
Ability to lift a weight of up to 10kg
A good team worker
Experience of working with / supervising volunteers
Knowledge of practical gardening
Practical skills and the use of hand-held power tools
Experience of giving talks to the public
Working knowledge of MS Office and ZIMS database
UK driving licence
An understanding and knowledge of articicial incubation
Experience with capital projects within a zoo environment
A commitment to equal opportunities
A commitment to working in the charity sector
An interest in or appreciation of the arts / culture / heritage

If you are interested in applying for this role, please complete the application form and return to by the closing date.

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant