Animal Director – Howletts

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Animal Director

Howletts Wild Animal Park

Competitive salary, negotiable depending on experience

Howletts Wild Animal Park along with Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve are the two captive breeding centers working with The Aspinall Foundation to reintroduce threatened species to protected areas of their natural range. The parks hold the largest collections of Western lowland gorillas in captivity and of black rhino outside of Africa. The Aspinall Foundation supports major projects for both these species. The Foundation helps the governments of Congo and Gabon to protect and manage over a million acres of gorilla habitat in which gorilla orphans from the bush meat trade, supplemented by captive born animals, have been reintroduced. The Foundation has returned rhino to protected areas of Tanzania, runs local community projects to protect lemurs and has set up rescue centers for primates in Java complete with monitored areas to release confiscated and captive bred langurs and gibbons.

Howletts Wild Animal Park covers over 90 acres of paddock and woodland just outside of Canterbury. The animals have access to large, naturalistic enclosures in a quiet haven of Kent. The park holds mostly large mammals with over 300 animals from 50 different species, including internationally important collections of langurs, clouded leopards and elephants. The Reserve’s annual attendance is around 200,000 day visitors.

The Role:
Actively contributing to in situ and ex situ conservation efforts, you will have authority and responsibility for the care, feeding, hygiene and welfare of all animals and animal areas at Howletts Wild Animal Park as well as the animal personnel.

You will manage and establish programs necessary for the proper care of animals and contribute to innovative changes to improve animal welfare, generate revenue and increase outside involvement. You will establish new partnerships and preserve current ones to achieve the company’s goals and you will represent the company both nationally and internationally at all levels of communication, while networking with other collections and like-minded organisations.

This is a demanding role but enables you to actively make a different to the animal species in your care and around the globe.

A full JD of duties and responsibilities is available on request.

The successful candidate will have:
• Extensive knowledge of the intensive management needs of multiple species gained from considerable experience working in an operational role within a zoo / safari park environment.
• Experience of dealing with government bodies and legislation relating to park operating procedures.
• An in-depth knowledge and understanding of nutrition, husbandry and successful breeding programmes.
• Strong leadership and people management skills are needed with experience in dealing effectively at a senior level of an organisation, as well as mentoring and coaching junior managers.
• The ability to initiate and build robust internal and external relationships.
• Successful budgetary experience.
• Experiencing of successfully organising and coordinating UK and overseas animal moves.
• Most importantly, demonstrate a commitment to conservation. This commitment should be accompanied with the enthusiasm to engage and motivate both visitors and staff with the company’s ethos.

Our Benefits:
• Working for a renowned conservation organisation
• Opportunities to travel internationally
• 28 days annual leave inclusive of bank holidays
• Free entry for you into both of our parks and free tickets for your family and friends
• Length of service related benefits including: Death in service benefit, Private medical insurance, a healthcare cash back plan and additional annual leave.
• Discounts on food and retail products at both parks as well as discounts on accommodation at Port Lympne
• Cycle to Work Scheme
• Training and development opportunities

Application Closing Date: Friday 10 September 2021

To Apply: email your C.V. and covering letter to –

To request the full JD: please email:

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