Dave: Head Keeper
Heading up the primate department Dave is always looking for ways to enrich his monkeys and improve enclosures. Read on to find out more about him.
What is the best part of your job?
That every day is different and interesting.
What is your favourite animal?
I would have to say a beaver, because it has the biggest effect on its environment other than humans!
If you could be any zoo animal what would you be?
I think I’d be a sea otter.
Why did you become a zookeeper?
I just fell in to it really, I’ve always had a passion for animals. It was either something to do with sport or animals and I can play sport at the weekends.
What is your favourite animal within your section?
You shouldn’t really have favourites, I treat them all equally. But… I’d say the lemurs or the armadillos, I’ve just taken on the civets – they’re pretty cool!
What is the most dangerous animal on your section and why?
Well, every animal has the potential to be dangerous. The capuchins and the macaques have the biggest teeth and they are quite intelligent. So, if you’re not on the ball they can outsmart you pretty easily.
How did you become a zookeeper?
I have a degree in wildlife conservation and I have a lot of experience in livestock with my farming background. I applied first for a job at Paignton Zoo 10 years ago and I was offered a job!
How long have you been a zookeeper for?
I’ve been involved with the Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust now for 8 years – but I’ve been a zookeeper for just over 10.
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