The Secret Life of the Zoo

The Secret Life of the Zoo

Series 4 - Episode 10

Sat 26 Oct 3:30pm - 4:35pm Channel 4


Many of Chester Zoo’s creatures are only just waking up when the gates close and darkness descends for another day. There are more than 800 nocturnal animals at the zoo including Seabiscuit the seahorse, Una the mouse-deer and... C11460 the fruit bat. While most of the critters have mawkish monikers, the keepers have refrained from naming their fruit bats - hardly surprising as they currently have nearly 270 in the colony.

Zookeeper Kirsten explains how the bats are a “victim of their own success”, and such a baby boom prompts the female bats to be sedated so they can have contraceptive implants fitted. But in the operating theatre, there’s a heartstopping moment when not everything goes to plan.


It's nightfall at Chester and the zoo's 800 nocturnal inhabitants start to wake up. Aardvark Koos is showing a potentially romantic interest in his sister Himba, but the zoo needs to ensure that their animals are breeding from the right genetic pool. It's also time for mouse-deer Una to leave her parents and meet a mate.

Cast & Crew

Executive Producer Alistair Pegg
Executive Producer Tanya Winston
Executive Producer Edmund Coulthard
Series Producer Pip Banyard
Documentary Nature