Organization: HOUSTON ZOO, Inc. (AZA Member)
Location: HOUSTON, TEXAS, Country
Job or Internship: Job

The Houston Zoo Animal Nutrition Department is seeking an energetic and highly motivated candidate, who is ready to work in a fast paced environment. Our team takes great pride and care in preparing the daily diets for the animal collection which includes mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates.

The Animal Nutrition Keeper I position performs a variety of duties pertaining to preparation and delivery of food and supplies between the hours of 5am and 2pm. We encourage candidates with food service and/or animal nutrition backgrounds to apply.

The Houston Zoo provides a competitive benefits package including 401k options. Uniforms are provided.


•Prepares daily diets for Zoo's animal collection, follows written and oral instructions concerning type and quantity of foods to be prepared and size of portions, obtaining necessary ingredients from the warehouse/barn/coolers/freezers, and washing, cleaning, peeling, dicing and/or slicing as required

•Accurately measures and weighs portions and packages foods in accordance with instructions.

•Cuts, chops and grinds foods based upon detailed instructions.

•Maintains cleanliness and sanitation of work area, all surfaces and equipment.

•Packs and delivers diets and supplies throughout Zoo as per instructions.

•Will assist in receiving deliveries and checking against packing slips.

•Assist in receiving using forklift when needed

•Occasionally interact with and educate the public about animal nutrition and department operations through tours, keeper chats and other special events.

•Other duties as assigned.



One year of food preparation experience in a commercial food facility OR 1 year of animal care experience in a zoological facility is desired.

Commercial-sized food processor experience desired.

Must have Forklift experience.


High School Graduation or GED required.

Must be able to read detailed instructions and perform simple mathematical calculations.

Must have good attention to detail and basic knowledge of Microsoft Excel and Word.


Forklift experience.

Must have good interpersonal skills and work well in a team environment.


This position involves considerable physical exertion, including daily lifting of heavy items, such as food tubs, bales of hay and boxes of produce up to 80 pounds. Will require long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces on a routine basis.


There are routine discomforts from: Exposure to moderate heat, cold, moisture/wetness and unpleasant air conditions. May involve routine exposure to soiled materials and light chemical substances such as cleaning solutions and physical trauma of a minor nature such as cuts, bruises and minor burns. Must be able to work in coolers in extremes of temperature.


Requires excellent hand/eye coordination, the ability to bend, stoop, crawl and walk on uneven surfaces. Keepers must be able to react quickly to hazardous conditions.


Heavy public contact is required, involving considerable interpersonal skill, extensive interaction with guests, members, donors and the media. A high degree of appreciation of Guest service is necessary.