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Clinical Nutritionist - (Full-Time)

Saint Louis Zoo
St. Louis, United States Posted: March 12, 2024

The world- renowned Saint Louis Zoo is an AZA accredited institution dedicated to saving species and bringing people and wildlife together. It is home to over 16,000 animals, many of which are endangered. Entry is free every day for everyone, an important part of our commitment to people and “Animals Always.” Learn more at: https://stlzoo.org/

About St. Louis, Mo:
  • From Explore St. Louis: “Urban explorer, outdoor adventurer, aficionado of family fun – no matter your travel persona, you’ll find plenty to do in St. Louis.
  • The city is brimming with free, world-class attractions and boasts an arts-and-culture scene that’s second to none.
  • Plus, fans of fresh air will be surprised and delighted by our flourishing public parks, miles of trails and exhilarating waterways.
  • Sprinkle in a bit of our secret sauce – the warmth and hospitality of the residents – and you’ll discover that St. Louis dishes up undeniably epic travel experiences. Don’t take our word for it, though.
  • Come and see for yourself.” Learn more at https://explorestlouis.com/
Position Summary:
  • The Saint Louis Zoo is looking for a positive team member to serve as the Clinical Nutritionist to the Saint Louis Zoo’s three campuses.
  • This position reports directly to the Director of Nutrition Services.
  • This position develops, implements and manages the nutrition program for the zoo’s animal population including monitoring diet consumption, diet formulation, and implementation, etc.
Position Duties Include, but are not limited to:
  • Responsible for developing, managing and implementing the nutrition program for the animal population at the Zoo, including monitoring diet consumption, diet formulation and implementation, body condition scoring, hand-rearing nutrition, and providing guidance for the department nutrition manuals. 
  • Communicates with curators and zoological managers on a daily basis regarding nutrition protocols for the animal population, as well as information on food supplies;
  • Regularly compile information on nutrition and nutrition related health issues in order to give diet recommendations to curators, vets, and zoological managers. 
  • Annual review of the dietary husbandry protocols (including dietary behavioral enrichment items) to ensure nutritional adequacy and excellence of diets in regards to maintenance of health, breeding soundness, environmental enrichment and training.
  • Responsible for approving all consumable items and diet changes;
  • Responsible for quality control testing for hay, fish, insect, meat (including whole prey items), grain, canned goods and produce.
  • Assists horticulturalists with the management and continued development of the browse program and surveillance of the grounds and habitats for toxic plants.        
  • Initiates and collaborates with the zoo veterinarians on clinical investigations and research projects as it relates to animal health and nutrition;
  • Responsible for advising the Director of Animal Health on nutrition issues that require further investigation; will serve as point person on all nutrition research projects.            
  • Responsible for maintaining accurate records and preparing reports as it relates to animal nutrition
  • Remains current with pertinent regulations and standards (federal (USDA), state, industry (AZA), etc) that may affect zoo programs, and provides recommendations to Dir. Of Nutrition Services for complying with relevant regulations.
  • Manages any volunteer or interns for clinical nutrition needs
  • Nutritionist interacts on a regular basis with other zoo professionals and academicians, providing nutritional information, collaboration on nutrition research projects, development of written nutrition guidelines for the Zoo’s exotic and domestic animals.
  • Feeds animals in accordance with nutritional and behavioral requirements as specified by curatorial and nutritional staff and updated best practices from SSP’s/SAFE/NAG etc.; participates in approved scientific research and educational projects.
  • Participates/travels to conferences, workshops, seminars, NAG and AZA committees as approved by the Director of Nutrition Services.
  • Actively participate in the zoo industry nutrition community.
  • Provides oversight of vendors, food items, food supply, sustainability and budgeting for Nutrition supported by the Director of Nutrition Services.
  • This job description is not intended to be all-inclusive; therefore, the employee may be required to perform other reasonably related duties as assigned by management.
Additional Expectations:
  • Must be dedicated to growing and improving our Zoo’s commitment to Diversity, Equity, Accessibility and Inclusion.
  • Represents management and demonstrates a commitment to the Zoo’s mission statement and its’ core values.
  • This position must strive to decrease our environmental footprint to serve as models to our community to do the same through education and example.
  • Must be passionate about conservation and supporting research that relates to Nutrition when possible
  • Performs duties in a service-oriented manner.
  • Recognizes the needs of others and treats others with respect and dignity.
  • Maintains good work habits and adheres to the employee handbook and all policies and procedures.
  • Deal courteously and effectively with public and ensure all staff help to fulfill the Guest Promise.
  • Demonstrates a commitment to maintaining a work environment free from discrimination and sexual harassment and supports the Zoo’s commitment to equal employment opportunities.
  • Demonstrates a commitment to workplace safety and works with VP of Animal Care and Safety Officer as needed.
  • Demonstrates comfort in public speaking, good presentation skills when working with the zoo team, our public/community, Zoo Governance and other internal and external stakeholders.
  • Commitment to the Zoo’s Three Keys (Animals Always, People Matter, and Operational Excellence) and Core Values (Community, Creativity, Openness, Integrity, and Life-Work Balance.
Qualifications Required:
  • Bachelor's Degree in nutrition field required. Advanced degree in nutrition highly preferred.
  • Two years minimum of experience working with nutrition for wildlife in human care is required. AZA experience preferred.
  • Valid Missouri Driver’s license or ability to obtain one is required.
  • Must be able to lift 40 pounds.
  • Demonstration of a high level of emotional intelligence and the ability to work as a positive team member, including excellent communication and problem solving skills
  • Proficiency in software such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PPT, nutritional analysis software required.
  • Commitment to the Zoo’s Three Keys (Animals Always, People Matter, and Operational Excellence) and Core Values (Community, Creativity, Openness, Integrity, and Life-Work Balance.

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