Zookeeper, Birds

Brookfield Zoo - Brookfield, IL4.1

Full-timeEstimated: $21,000 - $27,000 a year
Since the opening of Brookfield Zoo in 1934, the Society has had an international reputation for taking a cutting-edge role in animal care and conservation of the natural world. The bird collection is focused on population sustainability and the continued development and improvement of avian husbandry standards. Much of our collection is maintained in large multi-species aviaries where pairs of birds are rotated off exhibit for breeding. We maintain a large number of off exhibit breeding aviaries for this purpose which allows us to work with multiple pairs of multiple species at the same time. We have a strong presence in the AZA bird community, supporting the management of a number of SSP's and strong involvement in the ASAG and the PACCT TAG.

As a Zookeeper in Birds, you will, under close supervision, provide general care for animals and performs related work of maintaining buildings, grounds, and interpretives in assigned area. As a Zookeeper, you will also inform, assist, and direct guests as necessary.

The successful candidate will be expected to: Prepare and distribute food as directed. Observe assigned animals closely, routinely, and objectively report to supervisor on their behavior, health, and welfare. Keep animal records as assigned. Observe condition of assigned area(s), animal enclosures, and equipment. Monitor and clean public space(s), plants, and interpretives as assigned. Report maintenance needs. Perform minor maintenance tasks as assigned. Clean animal enclosures, pools, and service areas. Study specific reference materials about animals in assigned area. Read other zoological and husbandry texts as assigned. Perform routines of assigned areas and specialized procedures as directed. Monitor guests to insure animal and human safety and protection of Society property. Communicate with and assist guests. Take initiative to facilitate guests’ appreciation of animals and enjoyment of their visit. Demonstrate knowledge of and implement Society-wide and area emergency procedures as directed. Other related duties as assigned.

Position Requirements and Specifications

The requirements for this position include: Bachelor's degree in relevant biological field or equivalent combination of training and/or experience required. Animal care facility, farm, kennel, or equivalent animal experience required. Incumbent must possess an understanding of practical principles of animal behavior and the ability to work with live animals safely. Knowledge of natural history, zoology, or animal husbandry preferred. Must be capable of dealing with emergencies calmly and efficiently. Ability to perceive and act upon relevant changes in animal behaviors and conditions. Incumbent must develop proficiency in routines of assigned areas and specialized procedures as directed. Incumbent must demonstrate the ability to accurately perform job duties.

Incumbent must have or acquire general knowledge about the Society, gain an understanding of the Society’s mission, and become familiar with and follow Society policies and procedures. Must be reliable; have good interpersonal skills; and the ability to interact in a courteous and professional manner. Must learn and integrate information, knowledge, and direction quickly. Must be alert and make sound independent judgments and have good decision-making skills.


Valid driver’s license required for Illinois residents within 90 days of hire; valid out-of-state license required for out-of-state residents. Must be able to read, write, and speak the English language fluently. Spanish fluency a plus, but not required.

This is a full-time position with rotating shifts, including weekends, holidays, and evenings.

Additional Information

The Chicago Zoological Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

If interested in being considered for this opportunity, please visit the CZS Career Center to obtain more details about the position and to apply by submitting your profile. Please visit our website at www.czs.org/careers . Please look for requisition number 1897BR.

Schedule Details

Zookeepers generally must be able to work rotating schedules, which includes weekends and holidays.

Job LocationChicago Zoological Society-Brookfield Zoo
Zip Code


DepartmentAnimal Programs Administration

Animal Programs

Union StatusUnion
Work Shift

Rotating Schedule