Wildlife Research Coordinator

Lincoln Park Zoological Society - Chicago, IL

Lincoln Park Zoo inspires communities to create environments where wildlife will thrive in our urbanizing world. The zoo is a leader in local and global conservation, animal care and welfare, learning, and science. A historic Chicago landmark founded in 1868, the not-for-profit Lincoln Park Zoo, is a privately-managed, member-supported organization and is free and open 365 days a year. Visit us at lpzoo.org.


As urbanization expands around the world, a complete picture of how the changing landscape affects wildlife will provide scientists and land managers with the tools they need to conserve species while also mitigating human-wildlife conflict. Our goal is to create the most comprehensive understanding of an urban ecosystem by understanding complex relationships between humans, wildlife, and urbanization in Chicago and beyond. This full-time position will integrate the Davee Center and the Urban Wildlife Institute by leading a variety of field-based projects as part of the Health and Stress of Urban Wildlife initiative. Projects supported include an extensive urban survey of mammals using motion-triggered cameras and live-trapping, the collection of samples and laboratory analysis of samples from urban wildlife, monitoring bat populations at urban and rural sites in the greater Chicago area, and development of new projects related to this initiative. Responsibilities will include independent field work in the greater Chicago area, as well as data management, project development, statistical analysis, manuscript preparation, and laboratory analysis based at the zoo. Driving to and from study locations in the city and suburban areas is required, but a vehicle will be provided. Some data management using Microsoft Access will be necessary. The successful candidate will create new wildlife research projects related to their area of expertise and as such specific experience with a given taxa (e.g. birds, herpetofauna, bats, etc.) will be useful.


  • Assist with existing and new Urban Wildlife Institute and Davee Center research programs in conjunction with all partners;
  • Develop, coordinate and lead new projects related to stress and health of urban wildlife in the field
  • Work independently and as part of a team, in the field, lab and at the zoo
  • Manage other research interns and volunteers when appropriate
  • Maintain databases and perform data entry in Microsoft Access

  • Domestic travel for conferences
  • Attend Lincoln Park Zoo, Davee Center, and/or Urban Wildlife Institute-related activities as necessary;
  • Perform other duties as assigned by Drs Rachel Santymire and Seth Magle

  • Previous experience conducting ecological wildlife research in the field
  • Experience trapping, handling, and radiotracking wildlife
  • Experience in wildlife endocrinology or other laboratory analysis
  • Possess strong computer, organizational (project management), and communication skills (written and spoken)
  • Ability to work independently, and as part of a team
  • Ability to work outdoors in a variety of weather conditions
  • Willingness to drive to and from field sites around the greater Chicago area (up to 50 miles from the zoo)
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office, including Access, Word and Excel
  • Possess knowledge of Illinois fauna
  • Possess a valid driver’s license
  • Demonstrate a commitment to wildlife conservation through management of wild and captive populations, and willingness to participate in the department’s team approach to conservation research projects.
  • Preferred background in experimental design and statistical analysis
  • Must be able to work up to 10 weekends per year.

  • B.S. or M.S. in biology, ecology, or related field.
Lincoln Park Zoo is committed to an environment that is inclusive and welcoming. We celebrate the diverse qualities, perspectives, values and experiences of all people. For Wildlife. For All.