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Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium

Desert Dome/Kingdoms of the Night Mammal Department Intern

Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is seeking an intern in the Desert Dome/Kingdoms of the Night Mammal Department. The Desert Dome’s mammal and bird collection is comprised of approximately 40 species of desert and nocturnal mammals from a variety of taxa – including primates, carnivores, rodents, and bats, and approximately 30 species of birds.  The collection is featured in the Desert Dome, the world’s largest glazed geodesic dome and indoor desert, and in the Kingdoms of the Night, the world’s largest nocturnal exhibit.  The Desert Dome stands at 13 stories, covers one full acre, and features 3 major deserts: Namib of Southern Africa, the Red Center of Australia, and Sonora of the Southwestern United States into Mexico. The Kingdoms of the Night, located underneath the Desert Dome, is maintained on a reverse light cycle, and features the world’s largest indoor swamp.  
  • Develop, work on, and present an internship project aligned with the research needs of animal care staff in the Desert Dome.  
  • Attend weekly professional development sessions.  
  • Complete learning goals on internship checklist.  
  • Participate in and complete a mid-point and final evaluation.  
  • Assist in and complete tasks as assigned, including but not limited to: 
  • Cleaning and general maintenance of the exhibits and building. 
  • Daily care of animal collection. 
  • Recordkeeping. 
  • Animal enrichment. 
  • Monitoring behavior and changes in animal health. 
  • Diet preparation and feeding. 
  • This position offers very limited direct animal interactions and no participation in animal training.  Interns will be provided opportunities to observe Desert Dome animal care staff demonstrate proper animal handling/restraint techniques and operant conditioning training techniques when applicable. 
  • Interns are not permitted at this time to work within 6 feet of all primates, cats, and bats in compliance with COVID-19 mitigation protocols. 
  • Other duties may be assigned. 
  • Must be at least 18 years old. 
  • Must follow safety guidelines and always demonstrate safe working practices. 
  • Must have effective time management skills for working in a fast-paced and flexible work environment.  
  • Must possess strong communication skills; Communicate frequently and in a professional manner with supervisor and team members. 
  • Must work well with others and have the ability to work independently.  
  • Must be team-oriented and willing to work with other interns, volunteers, and staff members to further not only the goals of the Department but also of the Zoo’s Mission Statement. 
  • Must attend shifts on time and as scheduled.  
  • Must have the ability to follow detailed instructions.  
  • Must complete a TB Test before beginning internship. 

Experience Required

Previous experience working with mammals at an AZA institution is preferred, but not required.

Further Comments

EDUCATION: Interns must be currently enrolled in, or have recently graduated from, a college or university. A minimum of one year of coursework in a major field of study to be applied during the internship (e.g. biology, zoology, animal behavior, etc.) is preferred. Knowledge of mammal natural history, biology, captive husbandry, and conservation issues preferred. Must be motivated to continue expanding knowledge base as it applies to mammals. PHYSICAL DEMANDS: This position requires considerable physical exertion – such as regularly climbing stairs and ladders, climbing over barriers (up to 4’ high) to access exhibits, lifting heavy objects (up to 50 pounds), and/or assuming awkward positions. This position also requires working in hot and humid conditions. Applicants are strongly encouraged to consider these physical requirements before applying for an internship in this area. Interns that are not able to meet the physical requirements for the position may be reassigned to another department.



How to Apply

Visit to apply.  Prospective interns can only submit ONE application per person specific to their top their choice but may indicate up to two other areas that interest them on their application.  
Must submit cover letter and resume to at the time you apply. Applications without these materials will not be considered.   
Your cover letter should include clearly defined career goals including how interning in the area you selected as your top choice will help you achieve your goals.  
Interns must provide their availability at the time of their interview. Interviews may be conducted over the phone, in person, or over Zoom. 

Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium
3701 S. 10th Street
Omaha, NE 68107
Phone: 402-738-2098

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