Audubon Zoo is accepting applications until March 25th for a zookeeper internship program in the Jaguar Jungle department for our summer 2024 session. Interns will have the opportunity to work with a variety of South American species including Jaguar, Ocelot, Giant Anteater, Sloth, and Macaws. There is potential for the opportunity to cross train with a variety of native Louisiana species, including American alligator, North American river otter, bobcat, cougar, raccoon, red fox, and native Louisiana reptiles, amphibians, and aquatics as well as our Nocturnal building.
Internship session and deadline (exact dates are flexible):
Summer (May to August): Deadline of March 25th
Interns will receive thorough instruction in the basic principles and skills required to care for exotic animals in a modern zoological setting. Interns will work side-by-side with staff and gain valuable hands-on experience in daily exotic animal husbandry and best practices. This internship will teach basic principles such as working safely with exotic animals and following established protocols, exhibit maintenance, diet preparation, animal enrichment, training utilizing operant conditioning, behavioral observation, record keeping, and educational interpretation on natural history and conservation to zoo guests.
Internships are unpaid positions and last for a minimum of 12 weeks. Although exact start/end dates and schedules are flexible, interns must work either three (3) or four (4) days a week, including some weekends and holidays. Applicants must have current proof of a negative TB test as well as proof of a COVID vaccine. Interns must attend an intern orientation upon initiation of internship. No housing is provided.
This position involves manual labor and work in all outdoor weather conditions, including but not limited to extreme heat and humidity, precipitation, and freezing temperatures. Interns must be comfortable with physical challenges including, but not limited to, walking/standing for extended periods of time, lifting/carrying/pushing/pulling heavy objects (up to 50 lbs), climbing stairs and ladders, sitting, stooping, kneeling, scrubbing, hosing, raking, etc. Intern must be able to follow both written and verbal instructions and effectively communicate with other staff. Intern must be able to understand and follow all Audubon and departmental safety protocols. Intern must have the ability to use a handheld two-way radio, phone, and common cleaning equipment (brooms, shovels, scrub brushes, etc.) An affinity for animals is required – intern should be comfortable working around animals of all sizes and taxa and be able to demonstrate appropriate behavior.
Applicants must be at least 18 years old and be able to pass a background check. Applicants should have a demonstrated interest in animal care, conservation, and/or guest engagement. Related coursework and/or previous animal experience is preferred but not required. The ideal candidate is a positive, motivated, hardworking individual with strong observational and communication skills who has the ability to work independently and with a team. Applicants should have an interest in Louisiana environment, culture, and natural history.
Gain hands-on experience on the day to day life of what it takes to be a zookeeper.
How to apply
To apply to this internship please send a resume and cover letter outlining your experience and why you are specifically interested in interning with the Jaguar Jungle/Swamp department to Grace Martins at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please add “Internship Application – Your Name” as the subject. Please indicate your preferred availability.
6500 Magazine Street
New Orleans, LA 70118