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Animal Management Supervisor - Cypress Swamp

North Carolina Zoo
Asheboro, United States Posted: May 29, 2024


The North Carolina Zoo is looking for a dynamic, team-oriented leader as the Animal Management Supervisor, for its Swamp habitat complex. This position supervises a staff of Zookeepers that provide care for various species of animals including American Alligators, Cougars, Alligator Snapping Turtles, Eastern Indigo Snakes, Puerto Rican Crested Toads, and a number of other reptile and amphibian species. This Zookeeper Supervisor, under the supervision of the Curator of Reptiles, Amphibians, Fish, and Invertebrates, will be responsible for leading a dedicated team of keepers in daily activities that support zoo wide initiatives to improve animal health and welfare.

The responsibilities of this position include:
  • Directs and coordinates daily activities of supervised Zookeeper staff in monitoring the health and behavioral condition of animals in supervised facilities and maintaining animal populations to exceed AZA and USDA standards of care.
  • Oversees Swamp's behavioral management program utilizing trust-based relationships, positive reinforcement training, and behavior-based enrichment.
  • Develop staff in the areas of animal restraint and management strategies appropriate for the variety of species in the Swamp section.
  • Leads the process to select and train new Zookeepers. 
  • Schedules, supervises, mentors, develops, and provides leadership for Zookeepers in the progressive evolution of animal management, husbandry, team development, and the operation and upkeep of facilities.
  • Collaborates with the zoo's veterinary team to manage preventative health care, diet/nutrition, emergency procedures, and other health issues as they arise.
  • Collaborates with the Zoo's Conservation, Education and Research department with ongoing studies into welfare and makes necessary improvements based on data resulting from those studies.
  • Coordinates with the Zoo's horticulture and maintenance teams for the management of habitats and related facilities.
  • Identifies and prioritizes animal care issues and problems and leads work unit staff in root cause identification and problem solving.
  • Serves as key communications link with the Zoo's Animal Curators and Veterinary staff for information exchange and coordination.
  • Assists Curators with collection planning and collection management.
  • Coordinates management of breeding and rearing husbandry for animals in supervised work areas.
  • Contributes to the planning and design of new animal exhibits and facilities.
  • Performs animal care duties when sufficient Zookeeper staff is not available.
  • Leads the process for regular evaluation of performance for assigned staff and is dedicated to developing team members through active mentorship, conflict resolution, development opportunities, and accountability.
  • Collaborates with the Zoo's Animal Management Team which consists of Curators, Animal Management Supervisors and Veterinary staff for the improvement of zoo wide programs in animal welfare, staff development, zoo operation and guest experience.
  • Develops a strong cohesive work unit that continually strives to improve animal welfare, behavior management, guest experience, and contributes to the overall understanding of Swamp's animal populations and the in situ and ex situ needs of the species.
  • Participates in and implements the NC Zoo Environmental Management System (EMS) program.
  • May be assigned to work with other animal species in other work units as needed
Job/Physical Requirements:
  • Job offer is contingent upon passing a pre-employment screen conducted by assigned provider.  
  • Required to participate in the zoo's occupational health program due to potential exposure to zoonosis.
  • Must be able to work a rotating schedule that involves working weekends, holidays and after regular work shifts.
  • Position is considered "Essential/Mandatory Staff" requiring work on adverse weather days and during zoo emergencies.
  • Must be able to capture, handle and restrain live exotic and potentially dangerous animals and use associated capture equipment. 
  • Must be able to lift up to 50 lbs., have good physical agility, strength, vision, and hearing, and the ability to perform strenuous physical work in extremes of weather and challenging physical environments. 
  • Must have, or be able to obtain, and maintain a valid NC driver's license within 60 days of hire.
  • Must be able to achieve certifications in skills such as: marksmanship with 30.06 rifle, .375 rifle and 12-gauge shotgun, biannually for role on the Zoo’s Weapons Team.
  • Must be able to train and supervise Zookeepers in progressive behavior management, husbandry, problem solving, and critical thinking.
  • Must have strong interpersonal skills and be able to effectively communicate both orally and in writing with zoo staff and the public.
  • Ability to conduct written and oral informal public presentations.
  • Learn about the NC ZOO: https://www.nczoo.org   
  • Learn about employee perks/benefits: https://oshr.nc.gov/state-employee-resources/benefits 
 Knowledge, Skills and Abilities / Competencies:
  • Demonstrated experience managing reptiles, amphibians, and mammals at an AZA accredited zoo, sanctuary setting or related facility.
  • Demonstrated experience with the management of adult crocodilians and deadly/dangerous animals at an AZA accredited zoo, sanctuary setting or related facility. 
  • Proven knowledge of industry standard husbandry techniques, biology, animal anatomy, physiology, ecology, behavior, and/or safe practices around dangerous animals gained from working at an AZA accredited zoo, sanctuary setting or related facility.
  • Demonstrated experienced in the assessment of an animal program for the improvements in staff development, animal management, and/or guest experience.
  • Must have demonstrated experience using computers and MS Office.
Experience Required
  • Bachelor’s degree in biology, zoology, natural sciences, or related curriculum from an appropriately accredited institution and three years of progressive experience working in a zoo-based or related animal care facility; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
Perks
  • https://oshr.nc.gov/state-employee-resources/benefits

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