LANTRA Approved Firearms Training for Zookeepers - What possessed 32 year old Mandy, to climb over the bars at Berlin Zoo into the Polar Bear enclosure at feeding time, is anyone’s guess, the result however, was somewhat more likely to predict.  

Polar Bear Attack

(Above: Berlin Zoo April 2009 - Polar Bear Attack) 

At first the woman seemed elated as she swam toward one of the larger animals. This elation quickly turned to terror, horrified onlookers watched on as the German teacher was mauled and bitten several times before zoo keepers finally managed to rescue her. 

Zoo Training

Likewise, why Dhaliwal brothers Amritpal and Kulbir chose to goad the resident tiger 'Tatianna' at San Fransisco zoo shortly after closing time on December 25, 2007 is still up for debate, however when Tatiana escaped from her less than adequately secured open air-enclosure, she was able to kill one 17 year old visitor Carlos Eduardo Sousa Jr and severly injure both Dhaliwal brothers before she was shot by Police.

Firearms Training for Zoos

There are other incidents of dangerous animals injuring visitors to zoo’s, including a savage attack on 29-year-old Australian tourist Kathryn Warburton in July 1994. Kathleen jumped over two safety rails to get a close-up photograph of Polar Bear ‘Binky’ in his cage. When Binky stuck his head through the bars of the enclosure in Anchorage Alaska and grabbed her, she was lucky to survive after remaining in the animals jaws for several minutes.

More recently, two further tragic incidents have occurred. The first on the 22nd May 2016 when two Lions were tragically shot dead by zoo keepers in an effort to save the life of a suicidal man that had climbed into the Lion enclosure at Santiago Zoo. 

Santiago Zoo attack

And members of the Dangerous Animal Team at Cincinnati Zoo were required to make the difficult decision to shoot dead their Gorilla 'Harambe' when a 3 year old boy fell into the enclosure.

(Below: Lowland Gorilla 'Harambe' was tragically shot dead when a 3 year old boy fell into the enclosure) 

County Deer Stalking Zoo Training

Understandably, increasing levels of security are being required by the Police, BIAZA (British Irish Association of Zoos & Aquariums) and the HSE, to protect visitors to zoos up and down the country, and as a result substantial firearms training is required of zoo keepers, who's role it is to protect the public in the event of these rare occurrences.     

Regrettably, there are many incidents of people climbing into dangerous animal enclosures and of dangerous animal escapes, many of which have resulted in serious injury and even death.

‘CDS Firearms Training for Zoos & Wildlife Parks’ is the UK’s only LANTRA approved firearms training course for zoo's and is the go-to course for zookeepers and zoo managers.

The course is designed to empower zookeepers with the skills required to deal with these types of emergencies, and zoo managers with the knowhow to select the correct weapons and implement the correct procedures, to ensure compliance with BIAZA and UK regulations concerning the use of firearms in zoos. It is also designed to comply with new DEFRA guidance on 'Standards of Modern Zoo Practice for Great Britain'.

woodland stalker range day

Coming from an extensive Police background and with over a decade of experience delivering firearms training to zoos & wildlife parks, CDS lead instructor Peter S Jones has spent his career dealing with emergency situations and dangerous animals.

Through the huntingacademy he delivers a LANTRA approved, comprehensive, high quality, certificated zookeeper course via a convenient online platform that is available to zoos and wildlife parks throughout the UK.

Lantra Approved zoo firearms courseThe course offers affordable, easy access and an invaluable insight into subjects such as the appropriate choice of weapons, firearm licensing, how to liaise with the emergency services, how to approach dangerous animals and the relationship between shot placement and shot reaction, along with and a whole wealth of additional expertise that is delivered by an existing trusted provider of zookeeper training.

And that’s not all! - Zoos & Wildlife Parks that employ this fabulous means of training their staff, are also afforded a 1 hr free telephone consultation with our CDS lead instructor, to help ensure that they have in place all of the procedures and equipment that is required to deal with emergencies concerning dangerous animals. For those that want ongoing practical training CDS is also available to assist. 

“The CDS Firearms Training course for Zoos was professional both in terms of content and delivery” - Chessington World of Adventures 

“The content ensured that our zoo was up to date with UK legislation and BIAZA guidelines, I would strongly recommend this course to other zoos and wildlife parks” -  J.Merrington Zoo Manager  

CDS Firearms training Manual 180The Zoo Firearms Course includes the following modules:

Module 1: Introduction

Module 2: Firearm safety and understanding the component parts

Module 3: Selecting the right weapons & optics

Module 4: Choosing the right calibre & ammunition

Module 5: Marksmanship & Shooting positions

Module 6: Shot placement & shot reaction

Module 7: Contact & Cover and Reactionary gap

Module 8: Following up on shot animals

Module 9: Important procedural guidance

Final Exam

Too many zoos and wildlife parks are woefully ill equipped and ill prepared to deal with emergencies concerning dangerous animals. Enrol today here:firearms-training-for-zoos-and-wildlife-enclosures and get your zoo back on track, by taking the UK’s premier firearms course for zoos & wildlife parks. 

With our Police background, decades spent dealing with dangerous animals and over ten years experience dealing with zoos and wildlife enclosures, we have a unique skill set. If you would like to speak with us, or would simply like to find out more about CDS Firearms Training for Zoos then please contact our training co-ordinator Peter Jones: Tel: 07789 747709 / 0203 981 0159 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.





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