Reptiles and Amphibians with Richard Gibson, Curator Lower Vertebrates and Invertebrates I’m pleased to announce details of our next exclusive Chester Zoo tour, which will take place on Saturday, July 16th and provide a detailed insight into the zoo’s reptile and amphibian collections. Our guide will be Richard Gibson, curator of lower vertebrates and invertebrates at Chester Zoo. Before moving to Chester, Richard worked at ZSL London Zoo, has undertaken field work in Indonesia, co-developed and implemented the EAZA-supported field conservation project in Flores and is co-discoverer of parthenogenesis in Komodo dragons, a species for which he currently manages the EAZA zoo population. Richard is also Chester Zoo Amphibian Ark taxon officer and EAZA Amphibian TAG chairman. The focus of the day will be upon the zoo’s collection of reptiles and amphibians on-show in Realm of the Red Ape, Islands in Danger and the Tropical Realm. There will also be the opportunity to see the off-show facilities within the Tropical Realm where the zoo’s breeding and research facilities are located, a “must-see” area for zoo, reptile and amphibian enthusiasts. By necessity the number of people able to take part will be smaller than for our recent events and the group will be divided into two, but as an added bonus there will also be a behind-the-scenes tour of the zoo’s aquarium where alternate groups will meet senior keepers responsible for the zoo’s collection therein. Lunch will be taken in the staff canteen above the Fountain Shop, but please note that as this is not a public area disabled access is limited. The day at a glance: Saturday, 16th July 2011 The event is free-of-charge Meet at 10:30am outside the Guest Services Pavilion (inside the main entrance) Tour of the zoo’s on- and off-show reptile and amphibian collection Lunch in the staff canteen above the Fountain Shop Tour on- and off-show within the aquarium The fine print: Please note that although the event itself is free, if you are not a NEZS member normal zoo admission applies and anything purchased from the staff canteen is also an extra charge. Participation is limited to those aged twelve and over. Children aged twelve and thirteen must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times, who, together with carers are considered to be an additional attendee. Those aged fourteen and over do not need to be accompanied, but we do ask that anyone sixteen and under bring along proof of age, otherwise you will not be permitted to take part. The time at which the event ends may vary, so please keep that in mind when making travel arrangements or letting your family or carers know where you are. Numbers are strictly limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Once all places are filled, there will be a reserve list for those who have missed out. To secure your place, please send me a private message (PM) remembering to say whether you will be eating lunch, together with your real name and a contact number. Thank you to... Ahead of the event I’d like to thank Richard Gibson for giving us his valuable time and privileged access to the zoo’s reptile and amphibian facilities, and to Chester Zoo’s Director General Dr. Mark Pilgrim for his fantastic support and for allowing the event to go ahead.