Schoolchildren from across Staffordshire got up close and personal with exotic pets at the Wild Time Animal Club’s re- launch evening.
The event, hosted by Hanley-based pet shop The Unconventional Menagerie showed youngsters how to look after exotic animals like skunks, snakes, and birds.
The shop re-launched the Wild Time Animal Club after it closed in 2015 because of overwhelming interest in the sessions.
The first group of children listened to pet shop co-owner Christian Castille as he spoke about what reptiles eat, and the difference between snakes and lizards.
Josh Flint, a five-year-old from Newcastle-under-Lyme said: “We came to have a look at the animals and learn about animals.
“Snakes don’t have ears, and lizards do have ears.”
Josh’s brother, Zach, seven, said: “This is not a bad place! They’ve got lots of different animals.”
Along with 23 other children aged between five and 12, Josh and Zach learned how to pick up animals, what snakes and lizards eat, and all about turtles and snakes.
Mr Castille said: “It’s just about teaching children about responsibility as part of it.
“It’s educational, but they don’t see it as educational they see it as something fun to do.”
“Part of what they’re going to learn about is how to rehabilitate animals, how to care for them, and how to bottle feed some of these animals.”
“They’ll learn the difference between animals in captivity and wild animals.”
“They’ll learn about woodwork materials and construction, that they’ll probably never learn in schools and they are skills for life.”
Pictures by Georgia Hallett