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ZooTampa at Lowry Park

Animal Care Professional - Florida Mammals and Manatee Critical Care Center

ZooTampa is currently seeking for a full-time Animal Care Professional for our Florida Mammals Department and Manatee Critical Care Center.  Duties include, but are not limited to, daily care and feeding of assigned animals in collection, maintenance of animal exhibits and night-houses, behavioral observations, record keeping, animal enrichment and training, assisting veterinary staff, operation of utility vehicles, and public presentations.  The Manatee Critical Care Center is a rehab and release program that cares for sick and injured manatees.  The hospital runs 24/7 which requires a flexible schedule and the ability to work overnight shifts.  Applicant MUST be scuba certified. 

Your day to day

  • General husbandry and care of assigned animals, including preparing and distributing approved animal diets.
  • Close observation of animal behaviors with a particular focus on appropriate appetite, mobility and waste production to monitor health of animals; notification of appropriate animal care staff of any concerns. 
  • Shift animals according to area’s standard operating procedures (SOP).
  • Animal capture, restraint and handling techniques.
  • Engage with the Zoo guests at exhibits, conservation stations, keeper talks, training demonstrations and/or shows.
  • Maintain detailed daily records on assigned animals.
  • Assist in animal procedures including, but not limited to, translocations, veterinary procedures and crating.
  • Strong knowledge of Zoo layout and general animal collection to respond quickly during animal emergencies and also assist guests on a daily basis with exhibit location.
  • Initiates and completes area projects with supervisor’s approval.
  • Adherence to area’s standard operating procedures (SOP).
  • Knowledge of safety SOP, safety concerns and reporting protocols.
  • Knowledge of husbandry requirements and the prevention of zoonotic diseases.
  • Knowledge of basic nutrition requirements for assigned area(s).
  • Assist registrar in area’s record keeping.
  • Inspect, clean and maintain both exhibit and off-exhibit areas.
  • Propose and perform species-specific enrichment.
  • Promote active guest engagement through interaction with guests during both formal and informal discussions, during events and as otherwise assigned.
  • Report animal illness, maintenance, safety, horticulture or other needs to appropriate staff.
  • Assist in animal procedures including, but not limited to, translocations, veterinary procedures and crating.
  • Respond to and assist supervisor in guiding the resolution of emergency situations (e.g., Code I, II, III) within the Zoo.
  • Guide subordinate co-workers on intermediate procedures.
  • Observe safety policies and procedures in regards to the use of Zoo equipment, materials, chemicals and vehicles.

What are we looking for?

  • High school diploma or general education degree (GED); AA degree or higher preferred.
  • Three or more years paid keeper experience in an AZA accredited institution. 
  • SCUBA and First-Aid Certification required
  • Knowledge of Word Processing software and Spreadsheet software.
  • Must have good written and oral communication skills and ability to effectively participate in guest engagement activities.
  • Must be self-motivated and goal-oriented.
  • Must be able to maintain discretion with confidential information.
  • Ability to appropriately apply animal training through the use of operant and classical conditioning.
  • Thorough knowledge of zoonotic diseases and prevention. 
  • Ability to develop and maintain positive relationships with members of all departments and to work effectively alone and in group settings.
  • Ability to complete projects in a reasonable time frame to the satisfaction of management.
  • Deal courteously and tactfully with employees, peers, superiors and the general public.
  • Knowledge of occupational hazards and appropriate safety precautions.
  • Must have the ability to follow specific instructions and also be comfortable self-directing.
  • Must be flexible and have the ability to multi-task in a fast paced environment while maintaining a positive attitude with the public.
  • Knowledge of occupational hazards and appropriate safety precautions.
  • Capacity to anticipate: ability to think ahead and plan.
  • Capacity to change: ability to identify and correct operational problems quickly.
  • Must be able to think logically and solve problems with minimal guidance.

Other Requirements

  • Conducts all activities in alignment with AZA standards and guidelines, all relevant laws and regulations, safety standards and standards that ensure animal welfare.
  • Ability to work in extreme weather conditions typical to west central Florida (i.e., heat, rain or cold).
  • Possess visual, hearing and other sensory and cognitive capacity appropriate for animal care and general safety practices.
  • Ability to use radio, telephone and computer to communicate and follow written and verbal instructions.
  • Must be able to work in a variety of physical positions (including sitting, bending, standing, and walking) and to engage in physical labor (raking, sweeping, shoveling).
  • Must have ability to navigate paved as well as rough terrain on foot and by vehicle.
  • Must be able to safely and effectively engage in heavy lifting (up to 50 pounds).
  • Ability to work long hours and varying shifts, including nights and week-end, to support special events and the needs of the collection.

Further Comments

Who We Are ZooTampa at Lowry Park is one of the most popular zoos in the southeastern U.S., with over 1 million visitors annually. We have grown to what now encompasses 56 acres of naturalistic wildlife habitats in a lush, tropical garden setting with wide-ranging activities. The Zoo, accredited by Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), offers popular educational programming, fun recreational amenities, up-close animal encounters and engaging seasonal events for which it has won awards as one of the country’s most family-friendly zoos. Our mission is to rescue, rehabilitate and care for animals; create exceptional personalized experiences that connect people with wildlife and each other in fun, immersive ways. Our vision is that everyone we touch is motivated to join us in taking action to protect and preserve wildlife. Join us and become a part of creating unforgettable natural connections!


Medical, Dental, Vision, Pet, Life Insurance, 403(b) Pension Plan ** Vacation and sick time ** Employee Assistance Program ** Tuition Forgiveness ** Free gym membership ** Free admission to the Zoo, MOSI, and the Florida Aquarium ** Free or discounted admission to many attractions in Florida ** Discounted auto insurance ** And so much more!

How to Apply

To apply, interested candidates should click on the link to apply on ZooTampa at Lowry Park's website.

ZooTampa at Lowry Park
1101 W Sligh Ave
Tampa, FL 33604

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