‘it can be dangerous’
When talking to
Longleat big cat keeper, amy waller (right), the Wizard of Oz lyrics ‘Lions and tigers and bears (oh my)!’ spring to mind.
this year, amy celebrates her 10th anniversary at the wiltshire safari park. and here she tells TV Times about her job…
Zookeeper is an unusual job – how did it happen?
I’ve always had a passion for animals. I grew up five minutes from Longleat and used to hear the lions roaring from our house, but never thought of it as a career! after doing a degree in landscape architecture, I needed a job, so I applied for summer work at Longleat. I worked my way up and have been here ever since!
Is it as dangerous as it sounds? we work with big carnivores – tigers, lions, cheetahs and wolves. It can be dangerous, but we’ve had rigorous training. My dad sometimes has nightmares about tigers. when he worries, I remind him that it’s actually a very safe place to work.
Who are the park’s star attractions this season? definitely cheetah cubs winston and Poppy! they’re now ready to see the public – letting them out the first time was quite stressful.
Do you enjoy appearing on Animal Park?
Seeing myself on camera is a bit cringe-worthy but reminds me how special the job is. My friends love the show, but I tend to think things like, ‘My hair looks wrong!’