Blank Park Zoo
Blank Park Zoo

Blank Park Zoo Animal Care Internship

Click here to download the animal care internship application

Internships are available to college students looking to gain knowledge and experience in the animal care field.  The following teams accept interns:  Ambassador, Aquatics, Avian/Reptiles, Carnivore/Pinniped, Large Mammals/Hoof-stock, and Small Mammals.  Please see area descriptions for more information.

 

Animal Care Interns will be introduced to general animal husbandry practices, including:

  • Daily cleaning and disinfection protocols
  • Animal observation and record keeping
  • Proper diet preparation
  • Exhibit maintenance
  • Public & volunteer interactions
  • Introduction to behavioral enrichment and training
  • Introduction to animal restraint and handling
  • Veterinary procedure participation
  • Problem solving

Requirements:

  • 18 years or older, currently enrolled in college and receiving college credit for the internship.
  • On the first day of orientation interns must provide proof from their university that the internship will be for college credit. A letter from college advisor is acceptable.
  • Preference is given to those who are in the zoology, ecology, conservation biology, or related field
  • Must be a positive, effective team member and be able to establish professional working relationships
  • Test negative for TB, test will need to be done and paperwork turned in by the first day.
  • Successfully complete a background check
  • Capable of lifting 50 lbs.
  • Willing and able to work in all weather conditions
  • Summer interns must be available a minimum 32 hours per week, between the hours of 7:00am – 4:00pm, including weekends and holidays.
  • Spring and Fall interns must be available a minimum of 16 hours per week, between the hours of 7:00am – 4:00pm, including weekend and holidays.
  • Maximum number of hours interns can be on site during the week is 40 hours
  • Previous animal care experience preferred, but not required.
  • Select and execute a project with the help of animal care staff, presented at the completion of the internship.

 

Additional Information about Animal Care Areas

Ambassador Animals

We are looking for motivated and enthusiastic candidates who are interested in gaining experience working with a wide variety of animals including mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians, and invertebrates. Interns will gain experience in basic daily husbandry skills, diet preparation, observations, enrichment, and training. Interns will also learn appropriate animal handling skills while assisting with on-site guest engagement opportunities.

Aquatics

Candidates must have interest in marine and freshwater aquarium animals. Species in the area include a variety of Indo-Pacific and Atlantic tropical reef fishes and invertebrates, Amazonian fish, reptiles and amphibians, African cichlids, Pacific cold-water fish and invertebrates, and North American pond turtles. Interns will be expected to learn proper diet preparation practices, water quality standards, general maintenance of aquarium exhibits, and life support systems. Interns, who have SCUBA certification who have passed a doctor’s physical assessment may be asked to aid in diving to clean exhibits. Coursework in aquatic ecology, ichthyology, fish, amphibian, or aquatic reptile disease and medicine, and general animal behavior or previous experience working with the listed species is highly desirable.

Avian & Reptiles

We are looking for motivated candidates that are interested in birds to work around a wide variety of species and exhibits. Interns will gain experience in daily husbandry, exhibit upkeep, observations, enrichment and training for a diverse group of birds. This includes 30+ species of birds and 3 species of reptiles. Please note penguins are not a part of the bird team. Interns must be able to work independently, as well as a part of a team and enjoy working with a variety of animals.

Carnivore/Pinniped

Successful candidates will gain husbandry experience working around Magellan penguin, ring tailed lemur, gibbon, pacific harbor seal, and California sea lions. Interns must be able to work safely outdoors in all weather conditions. Successful candidates will have responsibilities that may include basic husbandry, outdoor yard and pool maintenance, diet preparation, enrichment, and project planning. Interns work alongside mentor trainers to observe animal training sessions with pinnipeds, primates, Amur tiger and African lion. Interns will be trained in public speaking and gain experience with public demonstrations and keeper chats including narrating to large audiences over a microphone during the summer season. Interns will research, learn and communicate accurate information about the animals to guests. Access into the cat complex is limited.

Large Mammals

Successful candidates will gain experience with all aspects of exotic ungulate husbandry, including diet, enrichment, exhibit maintenance, and assisting with training. Interns work alongside keepers and may also work around neonates and observe animal procedures, handling, and transports. Species in this section: reticulated giraffe, black rhino, okapi, yellow-backed duiker, addax, red river hogs, nyala, Hartmann’s mountain zebra, and Bactrian camels.

Small Mammals & Kids Kingdom

Successful candidates will have responsibilities that may include basic husbandry, enrichment, and project planning. Interns work alongside mentor keepers to observe animal procedures, handling, and transport. Species in this section: Kings Island wallaby, Nigerian dwarf goats, llamas, meishan pig, common Indian peafowl, trumpeter swans, and miniature donkey. Individuals may gain the opportunity to assist with the daily care of red panda and golden-headed lion tamarin. If rabies vaccinated, interns may have the opportunity to work with Egyptian fruit bats. For safety precautions, interns will not be working with our Japanese macaques. Interns must be able to work independently, as well as a part of a team and enjoy working with a variety of animals.

Click here to download the animal care internship application

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