Animal Caretaker of Birds Small Mammals

Posted on 02/17/2022

Animal Caretaker of Birds Small Mammals
Oklahoma City Zoo – Application Deadline: Open until filled

Employment Status: Part-Time or Full-Time

FLSA Status: Non-Exempt

Experience Required: One (1) year of paid experience working in an Association of Zoos and Aquarium (AZA) accredited facility with relevant taxa (includes qualifying unpaid AZA internships) OR, an equivalent combination of education and experience to successfully perform the essential duties.

Minimum Education Requirements: High school diploma or G.E.D.

Department: Animal Management.

Direct Supervisor: Assistant Curator of Birds & Small Mammals and/or Curator of Birds & Small Mammals.

Supervisory Responsibility: Direct (0); Indirect (0)

Primary Work Location: Zoo Setting both indoors and outdoors.

Certification: Valid Oklahoma driver’s license and completion of OKC Zoo Global Academy training in the first six (6) months of employment

Other: This position is safety sensitive. It is subject to pre-employment and/or periodic background checks and drug testing.  This position works around animals susceptible to specific respiratory diseases, thus is subject to annual tuberculosis testing.

Job Summary: Primarily maintains the welfare of the Zoo’s assigned birds and small mammal (may include other taxa) collection and their environments through daily husbandry practices. This position interacts with the public and enhances visitor experiences and performs a variety of skilled/semi-skilled work required for the care and safety of animals, staff, and the public.

Essential Job Functions
An employee in this position may be called upon to do any or all of the following essential duties:

  • Actively participate in daily animal husbandry techniques and assessments related to: food, water, cleanliness, health, animal transfers, and behavior.
  • Observe, monitor, and report animal behavior changes and medical problems; keep detailed records of animal weight, health, enrichment, training and behavior.
  • Maintain and renovate exhibits, service areas, and equipment.
  • Support daily purposeful enrichment and documentation to promote, encourage, and evaluate natural and guest engaging behaviors.
  • Develop a basic understanding of and the ability to perform operant conditioning training; Participate in animal training programs.  
  • Assist in veterinary medical procedures; provide medication and treatment as directed by veterinary staff.
  • Educate and interact with guests in both formal and informal settings; provide positive guest experiences.
  • Collaborate with other zoo departments.
  • Participate in and respond to safety-related issues and drills.
  • Participate in collaborative efforts to research natural behaviors and life histories of the animals in the area; research both current species and new species, as assigned.
  • Work effectively in a team environment, including volunteers.
  • Plan and organize work projects for the areas assigned; acquire supplies and materials.
  • Participate in animal transfers, both off and on site.
  • Participate in conservation activities that support the zoo’s mission.
  • Support OKC Zoo’s strategic management plans and institutional goals.
  • Drive around Oklahoma City area throughout all seasons of the year.

Non- Essential Job Functions

  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA’s) for Position
An employee in this class must have the following knowledge, skills, and abilities upon application:


  • General animal husbandry, handling and capture/restraint practices and procedures.
  • General wildlife management, biological and ecological sciences and their relevance to animals in human care.
  • General construction, building and grounds maintenance tasks and repair work.
  • General computer operation and effective writing methods.
  • Policies, practices, and procedures of the Oklahoma City Zoo and the assigned department and area (to be acquired within 30 days of hire).


  • Public speaking.
  • Preparing and maintaining a variety of records, reports, and technical correspondence.
  • Safe handling techniques of animals in assigned areas.
  • Interpersonal communication.
  • Organization and time management.
  • Strong sensory skills, such as eyesight, hearing and hand dexterity.


  • Work safely around potentially dangerous animals.
  • Practice and foster safe work methods, identifying work place hazards, and using appropriate safety equipment.
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with staff, professional colleagues, and the public.
  • Handle multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Work in an environment subject to constant interruptions and quickly changing priorities.
  • Work a flexible schedule which may include evenings and/or weekends and holidays and during emergency situations such as dictated by weather.

Physical Demands

  • Walk, sit and stand for extended periods of time.
  • Push, lift, and carry up to 50 lbs.
  • Bend, stoop, kneel, and move intermittently throughout the day.
  • Exposure to fumes, odors, dust, moving mechanical parts, and vehicles.
  • Exposure to extreme weather conditions, such as heat, cold, rain, snow and ice.
  • Exposure to potentially dangerous animals.

*This position description is a general guideline for work behavior and is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of all job duties.  Therefore, it is also not, nor can it be implied to be, a contract of employment.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Must be able to successfully complete an intense background investigation.

For more information or to apply, visit