29 June 2020

By offering fantastic internships we are inspiring the next generation of scientists, conservationists and zookeepers! Our unique programme offers students the chance to work alongside some of our experts within various teams at the zoo, including our science team and animal sections.

Through supporting future generations to develop their knowledge and inspiring them to want to act for wildlife, not only are we supporting them to develop their studies, we’re working towards our mission of preventing extinction.

Below we catch up with Megan Leary, our one-year science intern in animal behaviour and nutrition…

What is your favourite thing about working with Chester Zoo?

My favourite thing about working with Chester Zoo is the support you get from the science team and wider staff. Everyone at the zoo is really friendly and during this time where I have been away from the zoo, I have still felt very much a part of the team.

How has your work changed under lockdown?

As a science intern I am working from home during lockdown so my work is now more research and literature based as opposed to when at the zoo where it is more practical (e.g. behavioural observations). However, I have still been able to collect some data using camera trap footage. Watching our animals always puts a smile on my face, even if it is from home.

Any tips for beating lockdown boredom?

Trying to stay motivated in lockdown can be difficult, but I’m lucky to have a large green space close by. I like to go here for long walks and to listen to the different birdsongs. I’m taking on the challenge of trying to learn some of them to identify species.

What are your plans for when your placement ends?

When my placement ends, I will be returning to university at Manchester Metropolitan to complete the final year of my undergraduate degree. My dissertation is looking at temporal patterns of activity and habitat use of wet woodland reserves by bats, and I will be using everything I have learnt from the zoo to help me!

Do you have any advice for future interns?

My advice to future interns is to take every opportunity you get whilst working with Chester Zoo! I have had some incredible experiences whilst at the zoo (many outside of my day to day area of work). Even now whilst working from home I am still gaining invaluable skills and knowledge through the different work I am involved in.

OUR TEAM OF EXPERTS WORK IN SIX REGIONS AROUND THE GLOBE – REPRESENTING SOME OF THE PLANET’S MOST BIODIVERSE HABITATS. Discover more about our SCIENCE AND CONSERVATION work.

THIS IS WHAT WE DO