Matt Brash Zoo Vet

What led to Matt becoming a zoo vet and Wildlife vet?

After being brought up abroad, playing with lizards, rhinos and parrots, Matt always had an interest in unusual animals.

When taking up a new veterinary post in Malton North Yorkshire, he was asked whether he would be willing to take on the work as the vet for Flamingoland Zoo. He lept at the opportunity and has been visiting them weekly ever since.
 At the zoo he has under his care nearly 1500 animals, ranging from giraffe, Rhino’s Lions and tigers, down to tiny Poison dart frogs and lizards. There are the cute and cuddly, and the downright fierce and nasty. All grist to the mill in a days work for a zoo vet.

But he has not only worked with this zoo, but a number of others around the country, some specializing in Birds of prey, whilst others are smaller farm parks or just mini zoos.

Focusing on Zoo Medicine

In 2002 he was appointed a Secretary of States Zoo inspector, which means that he is involved in the complex process of inspecting other zoos, and ensuring that they are maintaining standards, as well as assisting with conservation and education.

In 2003 he gained his Certificate in Zoo Medicine and routinely works with the Wildlife Inspectorate, a branch of Global Wildlife, as a Veterinary Advisor. He sits on the Council for the British Veterinary Zoological Society, and at present is the junior vice president, and acts as the society’s media representative dealing with Wildlife issues.

Since 2010 Matt has focused entirely on his work with wildlife and zoo animals.

Working with wildlife

Matt has always had a passion for wildlife, and their veterinary care, rehabilitation and release back into the wild.

In 1999 Matt was appointed veterinary surgeon for a branch of the government that looks at wildlife. Another dream opportunity, and he still spends a lot of time working with ‘wild life’ scientists studying our native beasts.

For example, he acts as the vet for one of the government’s centres for research into the biology, ecology and behaviour of badgers and has been co author in a number of papers on badgers.

He is a contributor to the section on the Veterinary Treatment of Badgers in the BSAVA Manual of Wildlife.

In his role as a wildlife vet, Matt has studied the behaviour of foxes, both the urban and rural, investigating them as predators and as transmitters of disease such as rabies. He has published a number of papers relating to foxes and is the author of the Veterinary Treatment of Foxes in the BSAVA Manual of British Wildlife.

As a result of all his work with wildlife, he has often been used by the police, RSPCA, RSPB as a expert witness in cases involving wildlife crime. For example in cases of badger baiting, and digging, or with the illegal capture of endangered wild birds. TO date over the last twenty years he has been involved in nearly 50 cases of illegal badger problems.

Continued »

Matt Brash
Matt Brash
B. Vet. Med. Cert. Zoo Med. MRCVS