Chester Zoo, Britain’s most popular zoo, will once more open its doors to Channel 4 with a second series planned for later this year.
The new series, produced by Blast! Films and commissioned for Channel 4 by Anna Miralis, will use the same micro-rig technique to capture the remarkable behaviour of some of the world’s most endangered animals and their relationship with the keepers.
The first series was a hit for the Channel, averaging 2.7 million viewers every episode.
The second series will follow amazing new stories – from the mating of rare spectacled bears to observing the night-time behaviour of elephants – as well as finding out what’s become of babies born in the last series, such as infant elephant Nandita.
The new series will include a Christmas special.
Alistair Pegg, Blast! Films head of factual, said: “We’re delighted to be returning to Chester for another series of The Secret Life of the Zoo. From lions receiving help to conceive to zebra births to rare black rhinos mating, there are lots of new animal stories to tell and amazingly dedicated keepers to meet. The new series will take viewers inside a hidden world, using groundbreaking filming techniques to capture animal behaviour and relationships as never before, while allowing keepers to share their insights into the reality of caring for some of the world’s most endangered species.”
Chester Zoo’s director general Dr Mark Pilgrim said: “The Secret Life of The Zoo gives viewers a unique insight into the lives of our animals and throws a spotlight on the incredible passion and dedication of the keepers that care for them. In series one it was thrilling to see the births of a Rothschild’s giraffe and an Asian elephant calf in such intimate detail. Importantly though, it helped us to drum up some newfound appreciation for lesser known, critically endangered species such as mountain chicken frogs and Philippine cockatoos – and the work we are doing to try and conserve them. Modern, forward-thinking zoos can play a significant role in wildlife conservation and we’re pleased that, by taking viewers behind-the-scenes with us, we’ve helped to change a few perceptions. In series two we plan to delve even deeper. We care for more than 20,000 animals – from the weird to the wonderful – so there are plenty more remarkable species for viewers to get to know.”