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Safari West

Animal Husbandry Internship

The animal husbandry internship has several strings to choose from with a variety of taxa. Interns will be given the ability to work with African hoofstock, birds, small mammals, carnivores or a mixture of these animals. This program offers the opportunity for students to acquire the knowledge and skills to care for exotic animals and provide progressive welfare in accordance with AZA regulations. Students will learn the different needs of various animals, understand the process and importance of behavioral training and appreciate the effort that goes into husbandry on a 400 acre facility. Students will develop the fundamental skills needed to look after captive exotics while challenging them to explore, develop and apply ways to enrich the animals’ lives. Academic credit may be available upon request.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities 
o    Preparation, distribution and understanding of diets based on species and individual animals
o    Cleaning of enclosures, night houses, bomas (outdoor shelters), pens, barns, and general work areas (vet office, storage rooms, etc.)
o    Safe movement around animals and strong attentiveness at all times
o    Understanding of proper welfare and record keeping
o    Construction and implementation of enrichment
o    General exhibit maintenance

Internship Requirements
o    Availability: Completion of 3 months with a consistent schedule of a minimum of 2 days per week (full 8 hour days)
o    Fitness requirement: Intern must be able to lift/carry/maneuver a minimum of 50lbs as well as to be able to safely and efficiently navigate rough terrain
o    Collaborative requirement: Intern must be able to work as part of a team, take direction well and be able to interact with employees and guests in a professional manner
o    Self-motivated: Interns will be guided through the program but must be internally driven; they will be expected, after some time, to understand their daily responsibilities and be able to start their work without relying directly on orders
o    Completion of Final Project

Final Project
o    During the internship students will be expected to develop a specified project that has been approved by the animal manager and internship coordinator. This project can focus on any aspect that applies to animal husbandry. Students will be expected to write a paper describing their project results.

Experience Required

Applicants must be 18 years of age. All internships are unpaid. At this time we are unable to offer housing accommodations, therefore housing and transportation are at the cost and responsibility of the intern. The intern must have reliable means to get to Safari West consistently before committing.



How to Apply

Please send a completed application, resume and short cover letter, highlighting relevant experience, to Erika Mittelman at Not all applicants will be offered an internship position due to the high volume of qualified candidates who apply. We strongly encourage applicants who did not receive an internship position to re-apply. All applicants will be notified of our decision by email or phone.

Safari West
3115 Porter Creek Rd
Santa Rosa, CA 95404
Phone: 7075451513

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