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Zoo Keeper – Hoofstock/Giraffe

Are you passionate about?

…Providing exceptional care for animals?

…Saving wildlife and wild places?

…Inspiring guests to connect with nature and take action to impact the future of our world?

…Being part of a dynamic, growing zoo that welcomes diversity, equity, inclusion and personal contribution?

Explore a career with Reid Park Zoo.

Reid Park Zoo, located in beautiful Tucson, Arizona is a mid-sized, regional zoological garden caring for over 200 exotic animal species from around the world in lush, naturalistic habitats. With a mission centered in conservation, the Zoo is Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and participates in nearly 100 Species Survival Plans for threatened and endangered species. Reid Park Zoo maintains a state-of-the-art elephant program, a cutting-edge veterinary clinic that serves as a teaching hospital for the University of Arizona veterinary program, and is the co-leader of the Flamingo SAFE program to name a few recognitions. Attracting more than 500,000 guests annually, the Zoo is the midst of an exciting expansion project, Pathway to Asia, that will add four acres to its campus, bringing new species such as red panda, Komodo dragon and Lar gibbon, as well as a breeding facility for critically-endangered Malayan tigers when it opens in 2025.

The Zoo is located in beautiful Tucson, Arizona. Stunning high desert valley vistas surrounded by four mountain ranges offer a year-round paradise for cyclists, hikers, bird-watchers and outdoor enthusiasts.  Named the first UNESO City of Gastronomy dedicated in the United States, the City is a delight for foodies with a lively and developing dining, arts and cultural scene, and a lovely wine country just thirty minutes away. With the University of Arizona and its championship sports, top-notch medical facilities, and affordable housing, Tucson is a great place to bring the family and put down roots– a big city, yet with a comfortable, small-town feel.

Come join us at the Reid Park Zoological Society!

Reid Park Zoological Society is seeking a Zoo Keeper for hoof stock. One year paid exotic animal experience preferably at an AZA accredited facility is preferred. This may include paid intern work.

This position will primarily work with Grevy’s zebra, Speke’s gazelle, ostrich, white rhinos, crowned cranes, leopard tortoises, giraffe, spotted neck otters and meerkats although the position will be cross trained in other areas.  Experience working with rhino, giraffe and zebra foot care would be preferred.  We offer a full range of benefits including healthcare insurance and 401k.

The Society is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to create inspiring memories for all by connecting people and animals to ensure the protection of wild animals and wild places.  We provide educational and fun experiences for visitors of all ages. Reid Park Zoo is the largest attended cultural attraction in Southern Arizona with approximately 500,000 visitors annually.  Be a part of a vibrant, growing organization as Reid Park Zoo implements an exciting master plan that will be investing over $60M in new exhibits over the next ten years.

No phone calls or visits please.  This position is open until filled.  We are an Equal Opportunities Employer.  We are committed to attracting and retaining a diverse staff by creating an inclusive environment.

Overview:       Depending on experience, this Zoo Keeper position may oversee care of dangerous or non-dangerous animals and habitats.  Less experienced Keepers may, progress to dangerous animals per management discretion.  The Keeper will provide high quality care for the animals on their area as well as assist with habitat and night house maintenance.  Variable shift work is possible.  Animal care includes behavioral observations, positive reinforcement training, preparing and providing enrichment, cleaning, engaging with welfare committee as well as the supervisory and vet team.  The Keeper will be responsible for daily record-keeping including daily reports, medication logs, welfare tracking, enrichment records, animal training records and area notes.  The Keeper may work in a variety of animal areas and may be a swing or primary keeper of an area.  Work assignments are subject to the hazards inherent in caring for wild animals in captivity.

Reports To:    Animal Care Manager


Animal Care

  • Daily cleaning associated with animal night house, habitat, and visitor viewing area.
  • Variable shift work is possible with a couple of night shifts each month.
  • Husbandry care for the animals on the area (feeding, medicating, training, enriching and care specific to the species).
  • Completes reports including but not limited to daily animal reports, enrichment logs, water quality logs, training logs, medication logs, animal incident reports, etc.
  • Develops & implements enrichment activities for animals following AZA guidelines and per department practices and protocols.
  • Trains utilizing positive reinforcement to aid in animal management & promote visitor education.
  • Monitors animal welfare and report concerns to supervisor.
  • Follows all animal care protocols and policies.
  • Assist in the training of new staff and mentoring volunteers.
  • Completes all trainings as required.
  • Be able to perform those tasks that are essential to the job, with or without reasonable accommodation.


  • Participates in formal presentations e.g. Keeper talks, special events, behind-the-scenes tours etc.
  • Answers visitor questions concerning animals, conservation, zoo operations, etc.
  • Participates in AZA groups including SSP and TAGs

Health & Safety

  • Assists in the capture and/ or physical/ chemical restraint & transportation of animals.
  • Participates in emergency drills.
  • Willing to maintain proficiency with darting equipment & firearms if selected for safety team. Willingness to serve on safety team.
  • Responds to animal emergencies following approved protocols.
  • Stays current on required vaccinations.
  • Administrative Functions

                        Perform duties in accordance with RPZS policies such as completing expense reports and purchasing or cash handling procedures.

Provide excellent customer service as a component of all job duties.

Complete all animal records in variety of software programs including Animal Care Software, ZIMS, etc

  • Other Duties as Assigned

Preferred Qualifications, Skills and Abilities

  • Bachelor’s degree in a biological science, animal or zoology related plus one year paid exotic animal care experience OR Associate’s degree with three year’s paid exotic animal care.

For dangerous animal care this MUST include a minimum 12 months paid experience with dangerous animals.

  • Work experience within an AZA accredited facility preferred.
  • Willing to undertake an annual TB skin test (AZA requirement).
  • Must be able to lift up to 50 pounds.
  • Regular physical attendance at work.
  • Must be able to work outdoors in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Work assignments are subject to the hazards inherent in caring for exotic & dangerous animals in a zoological institution.
  • Demonstrated critical analysis, customer service, problem solving, conflict resolution, decision making, leadership, team building, time management, and motivational skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to tactfully handle stressful situations, negotiate and resolve conflicts, maintain confidentiality and to respect and observe organizational protocol.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with all levels of RPZS and coworkers as well as diverse volunteers, guests, donors, community partners, vendors and others.
  • Able to work flexible work schedule and adjust as required. Weekend, special event and some holiday work are required.
  • Please note that this document is not an exhaustive list. It is intended to give a reasonable idea of what might be required.

Consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), it is the policy of Reid Park Zoological Society to provide reasonable accommodation when requested by a qualified applicant or employee with a disability, unless such accommodation would cause an undue hardship. The policy regarding requests for reasonable accommodation applies to all aspects of employment, including the application process. If reasonable accommodation is needed, please contact the Human Resources Dept