Monday, June 28, 2010

Elephant Keeper Internship

Toledo Zoo Elephant Management Program

Elephant Keeper Internship

The Toledo Zoo and its Elephant Management Program has the ability to offer a unique opportunity to individuals that would like to make captive elephant management a career. The zoo has a structured internship program that encompasses many different opportunities throughout the zoo campus. The Elephant Keeper Internship would follow the present guidelines and requirements. The zoo is on a threshold of expanding their elephant management program in number of animals, holding and exhibit space. Our management program is staffed by keepers and managers with over 100 years of experience; their experience include both species of elephants and sexes, all current management techniques, reproduction, husbandry, enrichment and training. Our program also uses Alan Roocroft of Elephant Business; an international elephant management consultant.

A participant in the Elephant Keeper Internship Program will work directly with the zoo’s elephants and staff under the direction of the elephant manager. The intern will assist in the daily cleaning of the elephant facilities, preparing the animal enclosures and elephant enrichment. They will be involved in Free, Protected and Confined Contact handling and training techniques. There will be opportunity to learn general husbandry; including foot, skin and tusk care. They will learn techniques to reduce stress, stereotypical behavior, increase activity and fitness. With the zoo’s commitment to elephant reproduction the intern will learn different facets of artificial and natural reproduction. The present age structure of our elephants will allow exposure to developmental stages of a young bull and mother plus a new female member of the herd.

The zoo is in the planning/construction phase for a new cow facilities; the experience gained during the process would expand the knowledge of the intern beyond that of many seasoned elephant keepers. Observing any part of the whole planning and construction process will give the intern a better understanding of the requirements for housing, exhibiting and managing elephants.

The elephant program staff will be able to relate their experiences with elephants in different situations in captivity and observations in the wild. They can also discuss working at different facilities with elephants and other animals. The Toledo Zoo Elephant Keeper Internship can provide a participant with well rounded experience and knowledge that can start them on a successful career in elephant management.

The internship will run three to five months. Depending upon dates of participation, housing and possible part-time employment may be available to help offset expenses. Application deadline July 20, 2010 for this fall’s term; cover letters and resumes emailed to address below.

For more information please contact:

Don RedFox
Elephant Manager
Toledo Zoo

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