Chester Zoo has employed 300 new staff members in readiness for the opening of their new Islands zone, the biggest development in the history of UK zoos.
Currently one of the biggest construction sites in the UK, the new zone features recreated habitats from six areas in South East Asia – Panay, Papua, Bali, Sumatra, Sumba and Sulawesi and will be home to critically endangered Sumatran tigers, Sumatran orangutans and Visayan warty pigs.
The Cheshire-based conservation and education charity has taken on a total of 45 new staff and 256 seasonal staff across various departments. The zoo also hopes to take on another 100 in the coming weeks.
Jane Hubbard, head of HR, comments: "Working at Chester Zoo gets into your blood. It’s such a unique environment. All of these new starters can now boast that their office is a 125-acre zoo!”
Islands is scheduled to open in June and uses 42, 000 plants to recreate the different habitats. The zoo says that visitors will feel like they are following in the footsteps of the great explorers as they explore the islands on foot and on boats. Other creatures to look out for include Sulawesi macaques, Sunda gharial crocodiles and the Bali starling.
Inside the Monsoon Forest building. Images courtesy of Chester Zoo.