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Potawatomi Zoo

Animal Keeper

The Potawatomi Zoo is a 23-acre zoo located in South Bend, Indiana, United States. The zoo is  run and maintained by the Potawatomi Zoological Society, but is also still remains city owned. Founded in 1902, it is the oldest zoo in Indiana. It features over 500 animals and is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. The zoo has over 200,000 visitors each year.


The Potawatomi Zoo is seeking a qualified individual to fill a full-time Animal Keeper position. The successful candidate will have the skills and competency to perform normal keeper duties as needed in the assigned areas.  This individual will be responsible for carrying out all aspects of daily animal care and husbandry for a diverse collection of animals. A strong commitment to team work, professionalism, and excellence is required. 


  • Responsible for the daily observation of animal health and welfare.
  • Preparation of animal diets; feeding and watering animals according to a predetermined schedule.
  • Cleaning and disinfection of animal enclosures, holding areas, and exhibit features; food and water dishes / pans; draining and cleaning pools; collection and disposal of refuse.
  • Reporting births, deaths, injuries and/or irregular behavior of animals to appropriate manager.  Assists with animal health procedures.
  • Maintaining daily reports and other records.
  • Assisting in training animals for husbandry and enrichment behaviors.
  • Assisting with the movement, capture and restraint of animals.
  • Maintaining exhibit esthetics (planters, yards, perching, etc.)
  • Reporting maintenance issues and potential safety hazards to appropriate manager.
  • Performing minor repairs and improvements of exhibits under supervision.
  • Assisting in training new keepers and interns.
  • Monitoring and informing the public as necessary; responsible for public safety.
  • Maintaining Standards Operating Procedures (SOP).
  • Providing daily keeper guest experiences on a routine basis.
  • Maintaining and inspecting areas to meet AZA and USDA standards.
  • Carries out duties and job assignments as delegated by immediate managers or other appropriate members of management.


  1. The ideal candidate would be personable, proactive, self-motivated, independent, a problem solver, and be able to work with intermittent guidance.
  2. Ability to stand for up to 8 hours.
  3. Able to lift up to 50 pounds on a routine basis.
  4. Possess good verbal and written communication skills.
  5. Must possess a valid Indiana or Michigan driver’s license
  6. Bachelor’s degree in a Biological Science (i.e. Biology, Zoology) or closely related field preferred with preference given to applicants with at least one-year or more of  experience working with a diverse collection in a zoological, wildlife park or a closely related environment.


The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  While performing the duties of this job, the employee regularly works near potentially dangerous animals, moves around mechanical parts and works in all types of weather conditions. The employee frequently works in precarious places and the work requires considerable walking, prolonged standing and working outdoors in adverse weather conditions.

Specific vision abilities required in this job include vision and the ability to adjust focus.

How to Apply

Please submit resume to Jami Richard, Curator of Animals at

Potawatomi Zoo

500 S Green Lawn Ave

South Bend, IN 46615

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Potawatomi Zoo
500 S. Greenlawn Ave.
South Bend, IN 46615

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