Extreme diver joins team

An extreme cave diver who has spent the last three months exploring under the ice in Antarctica is the new curator at Bristol Aquarium.

Philip Jane, 41, has spent the past 10 years living and working in France where he was in charge of all life support systems for the l’Aquarium de Paris, one of the biggest aquariums in France.

A zoology graduate from Southampton University, Phil has been keeping fish and other exotic animals since the age of five.

As part of his new curatorial role at the Harbourside attraction he is relishing the opportunity to expand the range of species on display.

“I’m really excited by the challenge of my new role here in Bristol. My aim is to help bring the displays into a new era; providing new habitats for a whole host of more unusual and exotic animals,” said Phil.

“I am extremely lucky to be working with a great team of hugely dedicated people and in a site which has massive potential to grow and develop.

“As part of my remit I will also be looking to extend our educational role and to develop closer links with a range of local groups,” he added.

As a keen diver Phil has explored a series of underwater cave systems, dived on shipwrecks and descended to depths of up to 100 metre using special rebreather equipment.

During his more recent expedition to Antarctica he was diving in water with a temperature of minus 1.8 Centigrade.

In addition to diving, fishing and keeping exotic pets, Phil is also an enthusiastic mountain biker who cycles to work from his home in Bath.

Bristol Aquarium’s Park Director, David Waines, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be able to welcome Phil to the team.

“His expertise in every aspect of life support systems will be invaluable and will also enable us to further broaden the range and scope of creatures we are able to display here.

“Phil already has many very exciting plans for the site and we’re looking forward to working with him to further improve the overall visitor experience,” he added.

Issued by Bristol Aquarium. For more information and to arrange interviews or filming opportunities please contact Sarah Moore or David Waines on 0117 929 8929.