Do you want to pursue a Zoo Career?
There are several career paths you can pursue within a zoo, including zoo keeping, veterinary science, biology & zoology, education... If you are unsure what path is the right for you, check out the BIAZA's Zoo Careers Guide and the AZA's Types of Zoo and Aquarium Jobs.
Photo: Dallas Zoo
What to study?
Depending on the country, there are different education paths you can pursue if you are interested in working in a zoo. Biology, Zoology, Veterinary Science, Animal Behaviour & Welfare are all relevant subjects for a zoo job.
However, some countries offer very specific courses on the subject. You might be interested in studying one of these if you want to have a zoo specific education.
Zoo Research & Conservation
Conservation Research Scientist
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum (United States)
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, botanical garden, natural history museum and art institute, with a long history of basic and applied research in support of Sonoran Desert conservation. The Conservation Research Scientist position provides the opportunity for an excellent scientist to use their expertise and passion to make a difference on the ground for Sonoran Desert protection, while also contributing new knowledge and understanding to their field. Broadly trained ecologists, natural resource managers or conservation biologists from a variety of subspecialties with an interest in collaborating on current Museum projects are invited to apply.
Conservation Programs Coordinator
Association of Zoos and Aquariums (United States)
This position coordinates the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA’s) conservation and science-related activities in order to harness the community’s collective expertise and leverage audiences to save species, build conservation capacity within the AZA community, and raise awareness of AZA members as conservation and science organizations. Position will support growth of and member engagement in AZA SAFE: Saving Animals From Extinction and other conservation and science programs; coordinate AZA’s grant programs; utilize and improve departmental databases for tracking and reporting; generate reports and updates for publication; and prepare and give presentations.
Position will communicate with, and provide excellent member services to, SAFE species programs, AZA members, and AZA’s Wildlife Conservation, Research and Technology, and other committees. This position reports to the Vice President of Conservation and Science.
Conservation Lab Technician
Memphis Zoo (United States)
The Memphis Zoo is seeking a qualified individual to fill the open position of Conservation Lab Technician within the Zoo's Conservation & Research Department. This position provides technical, scientific and organizational assistance to the Conservation & Research Team and is based in the Zoo's laboratory. The Conservation Lab Technician will assist with monitoring reproductive cycles and developing protocols for monitoring a variety of species of animals. The Conservation Technician is required to maintain accurate and organized record of laboratory work, and effectively allocate work time between diverse tasks.
Species of research include: Giant pandas, ursids, elephants, canids, felids, amphibians, and reptiles.
Wildlife Conservation Society/Bronx Zoo (United States)
The Department of Pathology of the Wildlife Conservation Society at the Bronx Zoo has an immediate opening for a histotechnician. This is a full service laboratory, providing all of the processing, embedding, staining, and final prep work in producing histology slides for one of the largest zoological collections and field-based conservation organizations in the world. The successful candidate will be responsible for routine processing, embedding, cutting, staining and cover slipping of slides for H&E and special staining; excellent microtome sectioning skills and the ability to produce high quality slides at high volume are essential. Additional responsibilities include regular filing and maintenance activities associated with wet and paraffin embedded tissue archives; routine maintenance of the laboratory and equipment; reagent preparation; stock management, and other routine laboratory support activities, including but not limited to grossing/trimming necropsy and biopsy tissues. Histotechnician or histotechnologist certification (ASCP) is preferred, and previous experience in all aspects of slide preparation will be viewed favorably. Ability to type and use computer-based databases, ability to work independently or as part of a team, and good communication skills are required.
Research & Conservation Curator
Cabrillo Marine Aquarium (United States)
The Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in Los Angeles, CA is seeking a Research & Conservation Curator to work with the Exhibits Director to develop and manage the Aquatic Nursery research, conservation, and research education programs. The Research & Conservation Curator will lead research programs at the Aquarium, Research Educators, Interns, and Volunteers to conduct animal care and operations at the Aquatic Nursery and the Jelly Lab. The position will also manage the Young Scientist Program and other programs dedicated to the research education of middle, high school, and college students.
Conservation (Post-Doctoral) Fellow
Chester Zoo (United Kingdom)
We currently have an exciting vacancy for a Conservation Fellow to join our team on a 23 month basis working with our Science Team working on a substantial, prioritised body of research commissioned by Chester Zoo to support the Conservation Masterplan and wider NEZS strategies and mission.
World zoos and aquariums have consistently affirmed their status as institutions of great conservation and public value.
However, it is clear that the wider public understanding of what zoos actually ‘do’ is limited, and global conservation governance and policy-making bodies do not appear to consistently accept that progressive zoos can play positive roles in both biodiversity conservation and for society more generally.
This fellowship will seek to synthesise and analyse all available evidence on the role and impact of zoos. From this, we hope to be able to:
Understand and evidence the strengths and weaknesses in zoo-based conservation outputs across both species preservation and society benefits.
Propose a new, evidenced model for the role of world zoos in conservation and society.
Predict how zoos will need to adapt in a changing world (e.g. climate change, disease pandemics etc.).
This post-doctoral fellowship is funded by Chester Zoo and part of the Chester Zoo Scholars and Fellows programme, with a lead supervisory team comprising two members of the Science Department at Chester Zoo, Dr Andrew Moss (Lead Conservation Scientist: Social Science) and Dr Sue Walker (Head of Science).
Deadline: November 26
Research Scientist (Cetacean)
Georgia Aquarium (United States)
The Research Scientist position will help develop a robust research (field and/or laboratory-based) and conservation program focusing on cetaceans under GAI’s Center for Species Survival banner. Areas of study may include acoustics, behavior, energetics, habitat use and migration, or One Health, and will focus on marine mammal species within the aquarium collection toward the common goal of advancing species conservation. This position requires the ability to develop and manage a multi-investigator research program that adheres to the research priorities of the aquarium and regularly publish results in peer-reviewed journals. This position also serves as an institutional resource for content and communications to advance appropriate science messages through the aquarium’s many outreach channels.
Little Rock Zoo (United States)
JOB OBJECTIVE: To develop and implement an effective conservation program at the Little Rock Zoo to increase public awareness, education and participation of wildlife conservation initiatives and sustainability practices and to ensure compliance with all applicable policies, procedures and Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) guidelines and standards.
Regional Field Programme Manager (Mainland Asia)
Chester Zoo (United Kingdom)
We currently have an exciting opportunity for a Regional Field Programme Manager, Mainland Asia, to join our team. Current activities in this region focus on mitigating conflict between people and wildlife (elephant and tigers) in India, working in partnership with the Wildlife Trust of India. Additionally the post holder will lead on developing and co-ordinating new projects in the Mainland Asia region.
Project Planning and Development
Develop new conservation projects within the Mainland Asia region that will contribute to the delivery of Chester Zoo’s Conservation Masterplan targets. The post holder will work closely with the Chester Zoo Animal and Plant, Science, Conservation Education & Engagement and other teams to ensure that appropriate opportunities are identified and developed to reach these targets.
Project Management and Delivery
Take a lead role within multi-disciplinary teams to design and deliver impactful projects with clear conservation outcomes that contribute to the targets of the Conservation Masterplan. This will includes budget management, co-ordinating project teams and tracking implementation, evaluation of impact, ensuring ethical, risk and other standards are met, and applying adaptive management approaches.
Develop, manage and facilitate a Mainland Asia regional network of partners to enable to effective delivery of conservation impact. This will be across a wide range of potential stakeholders from in-country government departments and funders to local NGOs and community groups.
Line Management & Leadership
Where applicable, lead and manage field project staff and provide line management. The post has no current direct reports, and project delivery is usually through staff employed by project partners, however project personnel may be engaged directly through Chester Zoo for elements of project delivery. The post holder will also be expected to facilitate as necessary capacity building of individuals and/or organisations to deliver conservation impact.
Communication and Dissemination
Facilitate knowledge and media transfer from field to zoo and vice versa, including supporting Chester Zoo Communications staff to produce internal and external media; professionally representing Chester Zoo in appropriate conferences and other fora and providing material to support interpretation, education and public engagement activities.
Work with the Science team to facilitate effective research that provides the evidence base to inform project development and masterplan delivery. This will includes providing advisory/supervisory training and mentoring for researchers; ensuring projects apply a robust evidence based methodology and facilitating and supporting dissemination of research outputs.
Support logistics and organisation of Chester Zoo staff and other project personnel travelling to field project sites; produce and update travel support documentation such as risk assessment and regional guides; and provide region specific expertise and knowledge as required.
Grants and funding
Make applications for grants and awards where appropriate to support, enhance and increase the delivery and development of field projects, with support from the Chester Zoo fundraising team.
Deadline: October 24
Lincoln Park Zoo (United States)
This position develops guidelines and makes recommendations for the nutrition program at LPZ in collaboration with the Veterinary staff. It oversees efficient operation of and increases efficiencies in Nutrition Center operations. This includes warehouse operations, food and other supplies. It develops and implements nutritional programs and standards for various species under the guidance of the Director of Veterinary Services. Participates in research, publishes in scientific journals and presents at professional meetings as needed. Staff education and donor talks are required.
Improving Diversity and Access in Marine Science – Project Coordinator
Mote Marine Laboratium & Aquarium (United States)
Mote Marine Laboratory is hiring a Project Coordinator for the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation: Marine Science Laboratory Alliance Center for Excellence (LSAMP MarSci-LACE). MarSci-LACE is a 3-year National Science Foundation funded project with the goal to help increase underrepresented minority participation in Marine STEM fields through hands-on research experiences at the undergraduate level.
Under the supervision of the Project Director, the Project Coordinator will oversee project and research operations to successfully meet MARSCI-LACE’s stated objectives and outcomes. The Project Coordinator will also assist with grant related communication, grant tracking, purchasing, meeting planning, travel logistics, and ensure adherence to Mote Marine Laboratory (MML) procedures and grant requirements.
Conservation Project Manager 1
National Aquarium (United States)
General Purpose: Manages all aspects of Conservation projects including (1) budget preparation and grant writing (2) implementation of work plan including extensive management of paid and unpaid labor, extensive multi-day field work, and data collection and analysis (3) tracking of all technical and financial aspects of the project (4) communication of results through technical and lay presentations (5) evaluation of project results and preparation of summary reports including detailed financial reporting (6) coordinating multiple projects, each in different phases at once.
Medical Technologist (Part-Time)
SeaWorld Orlando (United States)
Do you have medical technologist training and a desire to work in a non-traditional setting? We’re looking for dedicated and collaborative individuals to join our exceptional and innovative Veterinary Services Laboratory Team!
What you get to do:
As a Medical Technologist you will perform laboratory analyses to enable veterinarians and curators to properly manage the health of the animal collection in the park and the animals rescued, rehabilitated, and returned back into the wild.
Perform all analyses in Hematology, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Mycology, Parasitology, Urinalysis, Cytology, and Water Analysis for park animal population.
Identify abnormal results and recommend potential solutions.
Maintain laboratory records and data entry into established computer system.
Prepare and process samples and maintain records for research projects.
Label, transport, and ship clinical and research samples.
Maintain laboratory and pharmacy equipment and supplies.
Dispense vitamin, pharmaceutical, and other supplies for daily use.
Assist in personnel training of laboratory equipment operation and procedures.
Medical Technologist (Full-Time)
SeaWorld San Diego (United States)
What you get to do:
•Perform laboratory analyses to enable veterinarians and curators to properly manage the health of the animal collection in the park and the animals rescued, rehabilitated, and returned back into the wild.
•Enthusiastically represents SeaWorld by displaying a positive attitude, maintaining a high level of energy and commitment to quality throughout all aspects of the job.
•Follows laboratory procedures according to federal, state and local regulations.
•Follows engineering and work practice controls for laboratory workers.
•Performs analyses in hematology, chemistry, microbiology, mycology, parasitology, urinalysis, cytology and water chemistry.
•Computes and prepares test results.
•Maintains records and enters data into computer.
•Prepares and processes samples and maintains records for animal care and research projects.
•Maintains laboratory supplies and equipment.
•Dispenses vitamins and other supplies as needed.
•Assists and participates in animal care projects as needed.
•Ensures excellent animal care service by responding to team's requirements, expectations and needs.
•Other related duties as assigned.
Research Assistant (Project ChimpCARE Welfare Assessment Initiative)
Lincoln Park Zoo (United States)
We seek a motivated and qualified candidate to conduct research related to the development of a Chimpanzee Welfare Assessment Program. The candidate should have an interest in animal (specifically chimpanzee) behavior and welfare, and some experience in the field on which to build.
Duties include collecting behavioral data, conducting interviews, organizing datasets, compiling reports, analyzing data, and interfacing with staff from a variety of organizations including zoos, sanctuaries, universities, animal protection organizations, and other related fields. Other duties as assigned.
This is a full-time, term position (approximately January 2022 to August 2024) based at the Lester E. Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes at Lincoln Park Zoo. The position will require periodic travel to several U.S.-based chimpanzee holding facilities (to be determined).
Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden (United States)
The Sustainability Coordinator is responsible for leading and coordinating activities in support of the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden’s (OKC Zoo) sustainability efforts, and for driving a deepening commitment to OKC Zoo’s organization-wide goals for resource stewardship. This includes developing and implementing a Sustainability Plan through a collaborative process. Additional responsibilities include auditing and monitoring organizational resource consumption, managing the compost and recycling programs, proactively identifying cost saving measures, and liaising with external agencies and organizations on sustainability initiatives.