- Twycross Zoo
- Atherstone, West Midlands
- Permanent, Full Time
£33,000 + attractive package incl. generous annual leave & discounts
Assistant Curator – Birds, Herptiles and Invertebrates
This is an exciting time to join us as we enter a new chapter through restructure, providing the ideal opportunity to drive positive change and help shape the future of our conservation efforts and exceptional work delivered by our Birds, Herptile and Invertebrates team in this newly created role.
Twycross Zoo is an award-winning conservation and science-led zoo in the heart of England. This year we are celebrating our 60th birthday! We are rapidly growing and welcoming over 600,000 people every year to our 100-acre rural site near Atherstone.
We are home to over 400 animals, including one of the largest chimpanzee families in the UK, and our primate collection is up there with the best in the world! We’re the only zoo in the UK to house all four species of great ape and we care for many other endangered species to the highest welfare standards, including Eastern black rhino, Sumatran tigers, Ecuadorian amazon parrots and no less than four species of gibbon.
The Role – Assistant Curator - Birds, Herptiles and Invertebrates
Reporting to the Senior Curator, you’ll be responsible for all elements of animal wellbeing and the presentation of all the zoo’s bird, herptile and invertebrate species. These taxa have traditionally been under-represented at Twycross Zoo and we are looking for somebody who can both increase and improve the species we care for, with conservation impact being at the forefront. As such this is a fantastic opportunity to help shape the future of TZ’s animal species plan.
As the Assistant Curator of Birds, Herptiles and Invertebrates you will:
- Provide excellent leadership, embedding a solution focussed approach to challenges whilst striving for a positive team culture and engagement
- Be responsible for all elements of team management for a team of Keepers including, but not limited to, training and development and performance management, completing formal HR processes as necessary
- Ensure continued improvement of standards of animal care in line with best practice, SSSMZP and zoo licensing requirements, and input on ethical decisions
- Regularly assess our animal management, recommending and implementing areas for improvement
- Establish positive communication channels internally with other curators, animal team members and the wider TZ team, ensuring relevant information is passed on effectively and efficiently
- Assume Duty Animal Manager responsibilities on a rota basis with the other senior animal team, including taking the lead role in the event of an animal emergency
- Practice professional and effective communication with external work colleagues, particularly in regards to the European and international management of bird, herptile and invertebrate species
- Ensure that the zoo’s policies, procedures, and protocols are followed at all times. Update and review all relevant Risk Assessments and Standard Operating Procedures as necessary
- Take a proactive approach to maintenance concerns, liaising with the maintenance department
- Work closely with the zoo’s veterinary team in all aspects of animal health care including, but not limited to, capture and restraint techniques, preventative medicine programmes, reactive care and cooperative health monitoring through animal training
- Be proactive in the support and facilitation of work from other departments, including zoo-based research, conservation education and animal services
- Show initiative in the suggestion of beneficial zoo-based research for the relevant species
- Work closely with all relevant parties involved in project planning and implementation. Take an active role in species and exhibit planning
- Represent the zoo on appropriate professional and scientific bodies and promote our profile and reputation as an outstanding centre of animal management, research, conservation, and education. Understand the work of BIAZA and EAZA and play an active role where possible
- Be part of the team ensuring the security of the zoo premises and grounds. This involves being a member of the firearms/recapture team
- Be willing to be trained as a first aider and to be on call as part of the first aid duty rota
Our Requirements: Assistant Curator - Birds, Herptiles and Invertebrates
- Obtained at least a BSc (or equivalent experience) in an animal or conservation related subject. Achieved the DMZAA (or equivalent) qualification
- Breadth of specialist knowledge of the modern practices for the keeping of the relevant taxa, with extensive knowledge in either bird or herptile management in zoos, if not both
- Up to date best practice knowledge for species management and be highly motivated in the delivery of these high standards
- Proven ability in efficiently managing large and complex teams. Able to demonstrate extensive experience in how to lead and inspire a wide variety of people with a flexible and calm working style
- High level of knowledge with regards to breeding programme management and the wider role of modern zoos in species and habitat conservation, with a good understanding of species planning
- Excellent time management skills with the ability to prioritise work; producing high quality work in an efficient and timely manner
- IT competence in Microsoft Office and ZIMS
You’ll work 37.5 hours per week on average, 5 days out of 7 on a two-week rolling rota. Benefits include:
- Permanent contract
- Salary of £33,000
- 31 days annual leave
- Staff membership card giving you free entry to the zoo on your days off
- Complimentary Twycross Zoo ticket allowance for friends and family
- 25% discount in the Twycross Zoo gift shop
- 20% discount in Twycross Zoo food and beverage outlets
- Star of the month award scheme
- Access to employee assistance services
More About Us
Twycross Zoo is at the forefront of conservation, education and research. We have a strong commitment to our award-winning education programme, aiming to increase the level of awareness, knowledge and understanding of visitors about our animals. We aim to inspire visitors to support biodiversity conservation in any way they can.
This is an exciting time to join Twycross Zoo following £20m grant funding to develop the National Science and Conservation Centre (NSCC) on the Twycross Zoo site. The NSCC will support vital work around species conservation. It will bring together experts in conservation science and train the next generation of conservationists, whilst offering researchers from around the world the opportunity to study the four great apes and other endangered species, in naturalistic complex environments. The facilities will include a lecture theatre, classrooms, and laboratories, all planned to open in 2025.
How to Apply
All applications for this Assistant Curator - Birds, Herptiles and Invertebrates vacancy are to be submitted online, and strictly no agency calls or agency CV submissions.
Shortlisting and interviews will take place while the advert is live; the vacancy will be closed as soon as the successful candidate is appointed. Applicants are therefore encouraged to submit an application as soon as possible.