April 21st Great Irish Bake

April 21st, The Great Irish Bake!

On April 21st, The Great Irish Bake will take place at The National Reptile Zoo, 11am to 5.30 pm. You’ll enjoy fabulous baked goods and have the opportunity to help sick children by giving a donation. All proceeds will be sent to the Temple Street foundation in order to help sick children and provide them life-saving care. Every day hundreds of seriously-ill children come to Temple Street for vital care. Your donation might help to raise the funds needed to make sure that each and everyone of those brave children is surrounded by the best facilities and the most up-to-date life-saving equipment. If you need more details check the website of Temple Street: https://www.templestreet.ie/ .

None of that would be possible without you,


We count on you, see you Saturday!


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One Day Closure, 5th April.

Due to works being carried out by the E.S.B., the Zoo will be closed on Thursday 5th April. We may re-open in the late afternoon on Thursday, depending on how quickly the work has been completed.

If you plan on visiting that day, please email or message us on social media to check if we are open.

Image result for crocodile hardhat

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Celebrating International Woman’s Day!

Today we are celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women across the globe. And what better way to do that than to highlight some of our intrepid team members!

Pearl with Christina


Zoo Keeper/Educator/HR

Our Internship and Volunteer Program comes under Christina’s watchful eye.






Zoo Keeper/Educator/Health and Safety

Along with her H&S duties, Hope runs our Lost World Exhibit in Drogheda.






Zoo Keeper/Education Officer

Tara keeps our Zoo to You team on the road and up to date.






Zoo Keeper/Educator/Veterinarian

One of our newest team members, Joana will be making sure that our animals remain as healthy as they can.






Zoo Keeper/Educator/Outreach 

Another new addition, Ciara will be taking on some of the outreach and educational work.











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Celebrate World Turtle Day @ NRZ



(Image: www.naturalawakeningsmag.com)

World Turtle Day is on May 23rd 2017, but here at The National Reptile Zoo, we just can’t wait that long to celebrate!

For the entire month of May, we are focusing our spotlight on Turtles and Tortoise from around the world and we’re here to teach you all about these amazing animals!


Throughout the entire month we will focus our encounter sessions (in The National Reptile Zoo, Gowran AND The Lost World, Drogheda) on Turtles and Tortoise so you can learn all about them, their habitat, how we care for them in the Zoo and the struggles they face in the wild.


The Main Event

World TURTLE day poster 2 edited

On Saturday & Sunday, May 20th/21st we will be hosting a Turtle/Tortoise weekend!

Whats included:

  • Meet our brand new additions – Critically endangered Roti Island Snake Neck Turtles
  • Turtle / Tortoise Encounters – Get up close and personal with Turtles and Tortoise
  • Morphometric Demonstrations – learn how we weigh and measure our tortoise and turtles
  • Faecal sampling – Peak through the lens of our microscope and help with the health checks of our tortoise and turtles.

Throughout the month of May we will also be hosting a raffle to win some Turtle goodies from our gift shop and a family pass for The National Reptile Zoo in order to raise some much needed funds for The Turtle Survival Alliance.

TSA flier


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Endangered turtles take flight!

Outside Plane with James and Crew 3

“Endangered turtles take flight”

Outside plane with James and crew 2

Yep, you read that right! Last Thursday, four Roti Island Snake Neck Turtles, flew from Southampton airport to Dublin airport as part of their journey to their new home here in Co.Kilkenny.

The National Reptile Zoo partnered with Flybe, Europe’s largest regionlal airline, to transport four critically endangered Snake Neck Turtles from ZSL London Zoo, to their new home here in The National Reptile Zoo.

Outside Plane with James and Crew 3

Accompanied by Zoo Director, James Hennessy, the Roti Island Snake Neck Turtles delighted passengers and crew when they had the opportunity to take in the air and pop their distinctive long necks out of their boxes before taking off for the short one hour and twenty minute flight.

During the summer months, we will be housing the turtles in our Lost World exhibit, located inside Funtasia Waterpark, Drogheda, Co.Louth after which time they will be permanently relocated to their new home here in The National Reptile Zoo, Gowran, Co.Kilkenny.


Roti Island Snake Neck Turtles (Chelodina mccordi) are IUCN red-listed as critically endangered. The species occurs in three seperate populations covering an area of just 70 km² on Roti Island, a small Indonesian island that lies 311km off the Australian coast.

Flybe’s cargo operation is no stranger to transporting rare species with previous special passengers having included ospreys, seals, Blondie the albino hedgehog who was flown to Guernsey; a sextet of rare Australian ‘big belly’ seahorses to the Deep Sea World Aquarium in Edinburgh and 10 stump-tailed macaques who travelled from Edinburgh to Southampton.

On board with James and Crew

As we are a conservation Zoo, we are thrilled to have worked with Iri and the team at ZSL London Zoo in order to facilitate the relocation of these four turtles and we cannot thank Flybe enough for their generosity and assistance in getting the turtles from London to their new home here in Ireland.

James and Iri

(Pictured above: Iri Gill, Head of Herpetology at ZSL London Zoo & James Hennessy, Director, National Reptile Zoo)

For the month of May, our spotlight is on Turtles and Tortoise around the world and to celebrate World Turtle Day (May 23rd) we will be hosting a special Turltle /Tortoise themed weekend later this month where you will be given the opportunity to learn all about these amazing creatures and you will get to meet the Roti Island Snake Neck Turtles in both The National Reptile Zoo, Gowran, Co.Kilkenny and in The Lost World, Funtasia Waterpark, Drogheda, Co.Louth.

For more information on our World Turtle Day (weekend May 20th & 21st) click here.

Once again we would like to thank Iri and the team at ZSL London Zoo and the entire team at Flybe, as well as the staff at Southampton airport and especially the crew from flight BE387  from Southampton to Dublin at 18:45 on April 27th.

Outside Plane 1 with crew and James

Until next time,

The National Reptile Zoo Team


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