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Registrar and Animal Wellbeing Coordinator

Sioux Falls Zoo & Aquarium (Dba Great Plains Zoo)
Sioux Falls, United States Posted: June 17, 2024

The Registrar and Animal Wellbeing Coordinator at the Sioux Falls Zoo & Aquarium plays a pivotal role in maintaining accurate animal records while ensuring the highest standards of animal welfare. As the Registrar, you'll manage comprehensive documentation, including veterinary information, husbandry information, genetics, and regulatory compliance. Meanwhile, as the Animal Wellbeing Coordinator, you'll lead the development and execution of the wellbeing/welfare assessment programs, collaborating with internal and external stakeholders to promote excellence in animal wellbeing. Your attention to detail, organizational skills, and passion for animal care will contribute to the success of our animal care programs, conservation efforts and operational efficiency.

Reports To:
  • Vice President of Animal Care
Essential Functions:
  • Registrar Duties
  • Procures and maintains required Federal, State, and Local permits necessary for the maintenance and transport of wildlife in accordance with regulations.
  • Files annual reports and renews permits as needed.
  • Monitors status of legislation pertaining to wildlife and transport procedures.
  • Keeps current inventory of the zoo and aquarium’s animal collection, and records of daily transactions including shipments, births, deaths, behavioral, reproductive and medical notes. Keeps the Zoo’s master animal records and paperwork in an orderly fashion and in accordance to AZA standards. This may include managing and recording the Animal Care daily report information into the Animal Record Keeping System Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS).
  • Prepares daily reports detailing events such as breeding activity, food and water intake, transfer or shipment and behavioral characteristics.
  • Assists the Vice President of Animal Care, the Animal Care Director/Supervisors, and the Aquarium and Conservatory Director with preparing and tracking animal transaction paperwork, arranging shipment time and dates with other facilities, arranging transportation with professional animal shippers and airlines transporting animals to the airport, and will occasionally require short travel.
  • Monitors the status of loan specimens.
  • Maintains files of all documents related to animal transactions (e.g., loans agreements, contracts, permits, etc.).
  • Prepares reports on animal population activity and management to the Vice-President of Animal Care, Animal Care Director/Supervisors, Aquarium and Conservatory Director, and Veterinarian and other institutional officials as scheduled.
  • Provides institution data for studbook reports, questionnaires, surveys and Species Survival Plan updates, or directs requests to appropriate staff members.
Wellbeing Coordinator Duties
  • Develops and supervises animal wellbeing assessment processes.
  • Chairs the wellbeing committee. Works collaboratively with the animal care staff; identifies and problem-solves potential wellbeing concerns.
  • In collaboration with the Veterinarian acts as primary authority for assessing animal welfare.
  • Reviews animal activity reports daily.
  • Submits periodic reports detailing the events that have occurred in areas of responsibility to Veterinarian and Animal Care Management Team.
  • Trains and coaches animal care staff and other staff in understanding the organization’s animal wellbeing philosophy.
  • Maintains knowledge of current scientific advances in animal wellbeing assessment and applied behavior management.
  • Makes recommendations, implements, tracks and evaluates the Animal wellbeing program to meet all AZA standards and other regulatory requirements.
  • Proficient in managing complex data sets and utilizing record-keeping systems to accurately maintain and update animal records.
  • Thorough understanding of local, state, and federal regulations governing animal welfare, conservation, and exhibition and ability to interpret and apply regulatory requirements to maintain compliance and facilitate proper documentation.
  • Thorough understanding of AZA accreditation standards for animal wellbeing and behavioral husbandry.
  • Eye for detail and a commitment to accuracy in recording and maintaining animal-related information.
  • Highly organized with the ability to handle large volumes of data, prioritize tasks, and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills to effectively collaborate with various stakeholders, including animal care staff, veterinarians, curators, and external organizations.
  • Must be proficient in the use of computers including MS Office Suite (Word, Outlook, Excel and PowerPoint).
Supervisory Responsibilities:
  • May help to train and mentor students, interns, new staff members; however, this position does not have any direct reports.
Work Environment:
  • Must be able to tolerate and be exposed to strong odors, toxic or caustic chemicals, dust, hay, animal fur/hair/dander, and wet or humid conditions (non-weather) and all variable outdoor weather conditions.
Physical Demands:
  • Must be able to frequently bend, stand, stoop, walk, sit, talk and listen; may be required to walk or stand for long periods of time; will use hands to manipulate, handle or feel; will reach with hands and arms;
  • must be flexible enough to maneuver in and around animals within exhibits, corrals and holding areas. 
  • The employee is often required to lift and carry animals or materials weighing 25 pounds or more. 
  • Must be able to work outside in all weather conditions.
  • Occasional travel may be required.
Experience Required
  • Required Education and Experience
  • Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited college university in Biology, Zoology, Environmental Resources, Wildlife Management or a related field.
  • Three years’ experience in animal care and administrative experience or any equivalent combination of training and experience which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities.
  • This role must attend and successfully complete the AZA Record-keeping course within 12 months of employment. Preferred Education and Experience
  • Certifications related to registrar or data management in zoological institutions may be beneficial, such as the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Registrar Certification.
  • Prior experience in animal record-keeping, data management, or registrar roles is advantageous.
  • Familiarity with zoological information management systems (ZIMS) or other electronic record-keeping systems commonly used in zoo settings is beneficial.
  • Knowledge of animal taxonomy, genetics, and breeding programs is advantageous.
  • Experience with regulatory compliance and understanding of relevant laws and regulations related to animal welfare, conservation, and exhibition.
  • Sioux Falls Zoo & Aquarium offers a competitive salary, benefits and PTO.
  • Full-time employees are offered Health Insurance, Flexible Spending Account, Dental Insurance, Vision Insurance, Life Insurance, Short-term and Long-term Disability, 401(k) Plan with employer match up, Employee Assistance Program, Paid Holidays (7 + two floating holidays), PTO for exempt employees is 18 days per year in years 1-3; up to 24 days per year in years 4-7; and up to 30 days per year after 7th full year.
  • Free family membership to the Zoo, Butterfly House & Aquarium; discount on food and merchandise in markets and gift shop. Bereavement leave.
  • Our organization promotes professional development opportunities.
  • We have a robust Conservation program that offers opportunities for local and international conservation trips.

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