EXPLORE THE ZOO

Explore all the great personal stories that make up our shared history of the zoo, from our opening 1930s until the present day.

4 results
1980s
1980

When I grow up, I want to be...

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1980
When I grow up, I want to be...

This was my first visit to the zoo shop. Little did I know I would end up working at Chester Zoo in retail!

By Alison Brooks

Staff

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1980

Hand-rearing zoo animals

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1980
Hand-rearing zoo animals

When I was asked if I would be prepared to take on the hand-rearing of one of the zoo's unusual Coleto Mynahs, I knew that I was in for a time of hard work. Afterwards, I could happily say that it was worth it.Gary, as he was named, was a real character. When he arrived in my office, he was six days old and he weighed a mere 16 grams, was the size of a walnut and completely bald. I couldn't describe him as beautiful, interesting is a better way of putting it, however he imposed his will on office life in an uncanny way.I remember him growning, gaining weight and becoming fully feathered - apart from the completely bald patches which remained around his eyes. The Coleto Mynah is a native of the Philippine and Sulu Islands. The adult pair we had in 1987 managed to rear one chick from several broods and, having failed with their first two clutches it was decided that we'd attempt to hand-rear the one chick of the third clutch. Hence the arrival of Gary into office life. Initially, he required feeding a small amount every 15 to 20 minutes, from 7am to 11pm. It was fascinating to watch his tiny feathers grow and develop and, once his eyes opened at around ten days after I received him, he grew in leaps and bounds.After about four weeks, he started to feed himself, although this was rather haphazard at first. He learnt to pick things up, and proudly scattered paper and pencils all over the room. He chattered away happily to himself all day long, and used to divefrom wherever he was perching to land on the head of anyone entering the room.Taken from 'Chez Nous' - 1987Photo credit: Chris Vere

By Penny Rudd

Staff Birds

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2000s
2000

Dedicated staff pull together

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2000
Dedicated staff pull together

After a second spread of foot and mouth disease which forced the zoo to close for six weeks, the zoo reopened over a weekend. The zoo made the decision to open to the public, and very strict measures were put in place, including disinfectant foot-baths and all cars and vehicles were washed before they came on site. Our staff volunteered to work an extra day without pay to make sure the zoo could open to the public. And it was all hands on deck, as the day we opened, visitor numbers reached nearly 45,000!

By Chester Zoo

Staff Birds

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2010s
2010

Engagement shoot

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2010
Engagement shoot

Chester Zoo means a lot to my husband and I, as we met working together here in 2007 and we got engaged in the zoo grounds in 2010! We therefore decided to have our engagement photo shoot here at the zoo. We're one of the many zoomances around the zoo!Photo credit: Sarah Jane Photography

By Julie Griffin

Staff

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