Name: Will Thomas
Position: Managing Director (AAL Selling animals as Pets Licence holder NVLIC/58478/11)
Master of Research (MRes) Natural Sciences (Research submission - Molecular Phylogeographic Origin Testing in the Tenerife gecko Tarentola delalandii). Studied at University Of Wales Bangor, course completed 2009, Distinction Attained, Winner of the Chuck Hollingworth award for best written thesis.
Bachelor of Science (Bsc) Zoology with Marine Zoology (Research submission – Investigating the effect of incubation temperature on hatchling fitness and morphology in the Mourning Gecko Lepidodactylus lugubris). Studied at University of Wales Bangor, course completed with honours in 2008, Research project part funded by the British Herpetological Society.
Reptile Trade, Having started work in his local reptile store back in 2002 Will now has well over a decade of experience working in the reptile trade having previously worked in two specialist shops before opening his own.
Zoo Experience, As a teenager Will undertook a worked at Bristol Zoo giving him a chance to further his knowledge of some of the more unusual species as well as learning about the importance of stud books and long term record keeping when breeding reptiles.
Co founder of Bangor University Herpetological Society, Along with two friends, back in 2006 Will helped to found the aforementioned herpetological society; the society has grown from strength to strength and is now one of the top herpetological societies in the UK
Consultant to the BBC, During the filming of the BBC2 natural history ‘South Pacific’ Will was employed in a consultancy role when working on studio footage with some of the reptiles, including amazing footage of geckos hatching.
Over a decade’s experience keeping reptiles, Will has been keeping reptiles since 2001, to date he has kept over 250 different species and successfully bred approximately half of them.
9 Years as a Semi-professional reptile breeder, throughout college and university Will funded the upkeep of his vast collection of reptiles through breeding and selling the offspring. He exhibited at all the major UK reptile shows and even international events along with supplying pet shops up and down the country and major UK wholesalers. To date Will has bred in excess of 10,000 reptiles of over 120 different species with approximately half being geckos.
Will has provided a number of seminars and informative talks to schools, societies and academic institutions on topics ranging from basic reptile keeping, ecology, reptile conservation, reptile taxonomy, reptile nutrition and at a higher academic level the use of advanced molecular statistical analysis techniques. Will recently spoke at the 2017 British Herpetological Symposium held at Drayton Manor Zoo on the topic of comercially breeding reptiles in a sustainable and ethical manner.
Field studies and conservation work
Along with numerous UK reptile and amphibian monitoring projects Will has taken part in tracking the spread of invasive Anole species in the Caribbean. In 2014 he also fulfilled a childhood dream of travelling to Indonesia to visit Komodo National Park where he was able to get up close and personal with Komodo dragons in their natural habitat.
Name: Paul Wiley
Position: Retail Manager
Qualifications: NVQ Animal Care, National Diploma Animal Management
25+ years keeping reptiles: Paul has been keeping reptiles and amphibians for over 2 decades having started age 10 with some Sudan Plated Lizards. Over the years Paul has kept and bred countless different species including everything from Iguanas back in the early 90’s through to the first UK breeding of Toad Headed Agamas in 2015.
20+ years Industry Experience: Prior to joining the team here at Global Geckos, Paul had been the Livestock Manager for the UK’s longest running reptile wholesaler for over a decade. What Paul doesn’t know about keeping reptiles and amphibians alongside the advancements within the industry probably isn’t worth knowing.
Personal Statement: Paul has been a part of the reptile keeping industry for most of his life and has always been a strong advocate of naturalistic rather than the artificial and minimalistic enclosures favoured by some. Making the transition from wholesale back to retail was prompted in part by having found a store which maintains the high moral and ethical standards that he too believes in. Paul's specific interests are diverse but he has an exceptional knowledge of vivarium plants along with an extensive knowledge of popular pet invertebrates, he aims to be able to pass on the wealth of knowledge direct to hobbyists from within the retail environment.
Name: Tom Middlebrook
Position: Senior Livestock Technician
Qualifications: BSc (Hons) Zoology
10+ years keeping reptiles: Tom has been keeping reptiles from a young age and has bred more than a dozen different species including everything from corn snakes and leopard geckos through to frilled dragons and various knobtailed geckos. He is now focussing on his rhino iguana breeding projects along with Australian pythons.
Reptile Shows: Tom can often be seen at UK and Dutch reptile shows exhibiting some of the species he has bred
Zoo experience: Shortly after finishing his degree Tom Worked as a volunteer in the reptile house at London Zoo which gave him an opportunity to work with a wide variety of species including the critically endangered Mountain Chickens (which is actually a large frog).
Personal Statement: Tom has had a passion for reptiles since a young age and is a firm believer in conservation and feels that the pet keeping hobby can play a larger role in saving some of the planets rarest species by increasing awareness along with stud book led breeding programs. His passion is for the rare and unusual species and his personal collection, amongst other species includes his 5 adult rock iguana’s (both Cyclura cornuta and Cyclura nubila nubila) along with his Jamaican boa’s, large number of python species and spiny tailed iguana’s. He is also particularly passionate about improving care standards across the hobby and is a regular user of forums where he is always eager to offer advice.