Zoo Careers

Making Real Impact

Always wanted to work with animals from all over the world? There are career options for everyone at the Milwaukee County Zoo. Check out the Milwaukee County Zoo job descriptions below.

Curator job requirements include:

  • Curator positions require a college degree and experience in the appropriate specialty (e.g. ornithology, herpetology, mammalogy, primatology)
  • An advanced degree is preferred
  • Three years experience required in the care and exhibition of specialty animals, with one year in a supervisory capacity
  • Management experience is preferred

 

Vacancies are rare but would be announced by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

Veterinarian job requirements include:

  • At a minimum, our Zoo veterinarian positions require a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree and completion of an approved residency or internship program in zoological medicine (or three years of clinical experience in a zoo or wild animal park)
  • Eligibility to possess a Wisconsin veterinary license

 

Vacancies are rare but would be announced by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians (AAZV) Job Bank.

For information and resources on veterinary technician careers, visit The Association of Zoo Veterinary Technicians (AZVT) – dedicated to all aspects of veterinary technical care in the field of zoo animal medicine.

Zookeeper job requirements include:

  • Extensive experience in animal care
  • Degree in zoology or closely related field is helpful, but not necessary
  • Experience with a wide variety of animals, large and small is a plus
  • Minimum one-year experience with animals required, excluding personal household pets; additional experience preferred
  • Applicants must be at least 18 years old

 

A Closer Look

The requirements listed above are minimum requirements to be a zookeeper at the Milwaukee County Zoo. Recently hired zookeepers have 4-year degrees in a life science discipline or a related field of study, as well as several years of experience as zookeepers at other zoos.

In addition to having a 4-year degree in a life science, it is important to have as much hands-on experience with exotic animals as possible. To gain experience, we suggest volunteering with wildlife rehabilitation organizations and interning at zoos. The next step after volunteering and interning is a seasonal position at a zoo. Seasonal keepers have a greater chance of being hired on as permanent staff members, because the organization has an opportunity to get to know the keeper better.

Zookeeping is a very competitive career, especially at large and well known zoos. Those serious about pursuing a zookeeper career must be prepared to move. Internships and seasonal positions are not always available locally; prospective zookeepers often move across the country for seasonal zookeeper jobs.

Zookeepers perform a variety of tasks from raking, shoveling, scooping, hosing, scrubbing, cutting-up and feeding-out diets. Other tasks include making and providing enrichment for the animals, training cooperative behaviors, as well as some veterinary work.

Interested in joining the American Association of Zoo Keepers? Click here to learn more.

Learn more about job opportunities by visiting the Milwaukee County Department of Human Resources website.

While Zoo Pride volunteers do not work directly with animals, they are invaluable animal observers and help disseminate information to the public.

To learn more about becoming a Zoo Pride volunteer, click here.

To review current openings and to apply online, click below. Please be sure to type in the phrase “zoo” under Job Title, Keywords, Req ID

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