Elephant Keeper (New Position)




Organization: Audubon Zoo (AZA Member)
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Job or Internship: Job

POSITION: Zoo Keeper, Elephants

LOCATION: Audubon Zoo, New Orleans, LA

Audubon Zoo is seeking a dependable, safe, and highly motivated keeper to join our elephant care staff to be a part of a dynamic, growing team. Applicants must have a college degree (degree in biology, zoology, or similar is preferred) and a minimum of 2 years of elephant experience is required (but more is preferred). Experience with free-contact handling is desirable. Applicants must be familiar with all aspects of animal husbandry including but not limited to safety, enrichment, training, exhibit maintenance, record keeping, and medical care. Keepers are also required to conduct informal chats, public presentations, and shows on a daily basis so public speaking skills are important. Ideal candidates will have excellent oral and written communication skills as well as computer skills. Applicants should be able to maintain a professional appearance and must adhere to all Audubon Image guidelines. Candidates must be willing to work overtime, weekends, and holidays as needed and be available on a 24-hour basis when necessary. Applicants must be willing to work outdoors in all types of weather, lift heavy objects (up to 80 pounds), and risk periodic exposure to fairly predictable and controllable hazards associated with wild animals and zoonotic diseases. Interested candidates must have a current negative TB test and a valid driver’s license. Candidates must be able to work as part of a team. Applications not meeting the minimum requirements will not be considered. All applicants must be able to pass a drug screen and a background check before employment. Keeper level of hire will be based on amount of previous experience.

Audubon Zoo is currently constructing a new elephant complex for Asian elephants that is designed to house four animals; therefore we are increasing our staffing accordingly. The new barn has already been completed. The Zoo currently houses two older cows that are long-term residents of the Zoo and have been maintained in a free contact setting. As we progress towards meeting the new guidelines of elephant management, we will be adding additional animals to the herd. Our ideal candidate is someone who is passionate about elephants, experienced in the use of operant conditioning, and has knowledge working animals in free contact as well as restricted contact.

New Orleans has experienced a rebirth since the events of Hurricane Katrina. The City is a vibrant, exciting place to live. The Zoo is also in an exciting growth phase with many new projects currently underway along with a number of future exhibit enhancements planned within the zoo.

Interested candidates should email (preferred) a resume and cover letter to:

Joe Forys, Curator of Large Mammals

jforys@auduboninstitute.org

Or they can be mailed to:

Joe Forys, Curator of Large Mammals

Audubon Zoo

6500 Magazine St.

New Orleans, LA 70118