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Animal Keeper - Team Africa

Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
Cincinnati, United States Posted: May 14, 2024

The Cincinnati Zoo’s Team Africa is looking for a new team member with a passion for African species. The Africa section includes social carnivores (lions, painted dogs, meerkats) ungulates (hippos, giraffe, antelope) and various birds. This position is for a swing keeper role and will be expected to learn and work all routines in the area as needed. The ideal candidate is an animal care professional with a minimum of three years specifically involved with the care of any of these taxa. Practical experience with operant conditioning, behavior-based enrichment, and a swing role are strongly desired.

Minimum Desired Qualifications:
Education & Experience:
  • Demonstrated knowledge and relevant experience caring for animals in a zoo setting within the last five years
  • The ideal candidate will have a degree in a related field & experience working with a variety of ungulates, birds, and carnivores
  • Additional experience with animal introductions, operant conditioning, manual-restraint, and swing-keeping should be noted
  • This position requires a dedicated, motivated individual who excels at working collaboratively within a diverse team
  • Equivalent combinations of education and experience sufficient to successfully perform the essential duties of the job will be considered
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:
  • Actively demonstrate the Zoo’s Core Values and Behaviors
  • Demonstrate excellent communication and problem-solving skills, while applying good judgment, to deliver animal care and guest experiences that meet the highest standards
  • The ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with co-workers (including staff, interns, students and volunteers) is critical
  • Must be comfortable with guest interactions and in delivering public presentations, including daily keeper encounters and guest tours
Representative responsibilities/duties for include, but are not limited to:
  • Perform all duties associated with the provisioning of high-level animal husbandry for the animals in Africa
  • Complete inspection of all enclosures to ensure the safety of the animal collection and Zoo staff
  • Identify maintenance issues and correct or repair each as required, reporting non-correctable maintenance issues, including potential safety hazards, to the Maintenance Dept
  • Observe general animal health and behavior, on a daily basis, and report any abnormal circumstances to a supervisor
  • Maintain records of health, behavior, enrichment, operant conditioning and visitor engagement issues in designated programs in assigned areas, via electronic programs
  • Prepare and follow prescribed diets and feeding procedures for the animal collection
  • Perform behavior modification and enrichment programs in assigned areas;
  • Instruct new personnel in the proper methods of animal care consistent with approved policies and procedures
  • Assist in the training, supervision, evaluation of volunteers, interns, and vocational students, as needed
  • Assist animal health and curatorial staff with animal handling, capture, restraint, transport and medication administration
  • Develop and present visitor engagement programs that include, but are not restricted to, random encounters, educational programs and behind-the-scene tours
  • Interact with the public and Zoo staff in a professional and courteous manner
  • Make decisions consistent with the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden policies and procedures when required
Perform other duties as assigned by your supervisor
  • Working Conditions:  Employment is contingent upon successful completion of a post-offer, pre-employment drug & nicotine/drug screen & background check.
  • While performing the duties of this job the employee is regularly required to stand; walk; climb or balance and grasp objects. 
  • In addition, the employee may be exposed to Zoonosis, chemicals and outside weather conditions; Must be able to lift & move 50 pounds without mechanical assistance;
  • possess a valid driver’s license (and insurable to drive a Zoo vehicle).
  • Keepers on this team are expected to be able to work alone if needed.
Position Details:
  • This is a full-time (40 hours per week with benefits) Union keeper position, which is subject to the successful completion of a probationary and the deduction of union dues.
  • This position requires weekend work with regular off-days to be set at supervisor's discretion but will likely be non-weekend days.
  • This is a 4-10 hr/day schedule which requires flexibility to work early morning and late evening events. 
Pay & Benefits:
  • Starting hourly pay rate is between $21.15 - $25.06 depending upon experience.
  • We offer a comprehensive benefits package in support of our employees’ Total Well-Being including affordable medical, dental & vision coverage;
  • free mental health counseling and coaching, 401(k) plan with company match;
  • flexible spending accounts;
  • generous paid time off banks; company-paid disability & life insurance; park discounts and free passes.
  • To apply for this position, please visit http://cincinnatizoo.org/about-us/job-opportunities/. 
  • Cover letter and resume should be included in your online application. 
  • Applications will be reviewed as they are received, so please apply soon!
  • We strive to be an organization that is diverse and reflects the fullness of society.
  • With a strongly held value for an organizational culture characterized by inclusion and belonging, we are committed to equity in all we do.
  • We are especially interested in candidates who can contribute to our organization’s diversity and who want to walk alongside us in our commitment to inclusion and equity. 
  • CZBG is a Ellequate Certified Leader in Workplace Equity.  
  • Full Benefits
  • Starting pay range is $21.15 - $25.06/hour, DOE

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