Keeper - Birds

Audubon Nature Institute Inc
Lafayette Square, Louisiana, US
Aug 03, 2021
Aug 28, 2021
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type
Full-time, Benefited- USFWS Grant-funded Bird Keeper, Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center, Audubon Nature Institute, New Orleans, LA About the Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center: The Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center (FMASSC) is one of over ten facilities run by the Audubon Nature Institute. It is a unique piece of property that expands approximately 1,000 acres in an area just south of the city of New Orleans. Historically, the FMASSC was well known for its state-of-the-art research facility, the "Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species (ACRES)," which was involved in reproductive research techniques to help save endangered species, specifically felids. The site also houses the Audubon Aquatics Center, an off-site holding and stranding rehab facility for the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, and the Crane Recovery Programs, focusing on the breeding and release of Mississippi sandhill and whooping cranes. The FMASSC facility is not open to the general public. Description: Reporting directly to the Assistant Curator, this keeper position will focus on various bird breeding programs, focusing particularly on endangered whooping cranes. Other species include Mississippi sandhill cranes, storks and curassow. Located on a 1,000 acre piece of property called the Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center (FMASSC), an AZA- certified facility that is part of the larger Audubon Nature Institute. The FMASSC facility is not open to the general public. This position is a full time, benefited position that is grant funded for the recovery of the whooping crane populations through USFWS. This position is guaranteed for at least one year, with the option to be extended for up to 5 years. The crane programs work closely with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service to help reintroduce this species back into their former ranges. Pay is determined by experience and education level. Responsibilities: * Provide daily husbandry of the captive flock of cranes and miscellaneous other species. * Perform seasonal artificial insemination of breeding flock. * Assist in egg handling and incubation practices. * Assist in the "costume-rearing" of five to twenty-five crane chicks per year. * Identify and perform routine maintenance issues. Often conducting many projects at one time. * Perform routine grounds/landscaping tasks. * Maintain records and conduct behavioral observations. * Assist in the training and supervision of other keepers, interns, and volunteers. * Assist veterinary and supervisory staff in treating animals as assigned. * Prepare and follow prescribed diets and feeding procedures. * Observe strict crane costume protocol, including not speaking for long periods of time. * Work in a potential harsh weather environment- outdoors, in extreme heat, high humidity, heavy rain, and around a wide array of wild animals, including snakes and insects. This position is very strenuous and labor intensive. * Work safely in costume with accompanying visual obstruction around small, mobile chicks. * Basic horticultural maintenance (i.e. Mowing, weed eating, scything, pruning, tree trimming/cutting, enclosure landscaping, etc.). * General exhibit/enclosure maintenance, including pool and flight netting maintenance. * Ability to follow Nuisance wildlife protocols. * Be able to receive and follow direction well. * Work well both independently and in a small group. * With training, be able to safely manage tall, aggressive birds. * Maintain regular attendance in compliance with Audubon Nature Institute's standards, as required by scheduling which may vary according to the needs of the organization. * Maintain high standards of personal appearance and grooming, which includes wearing the proper uniform and name tag when working. * Comply at all times with Audubon Nature Institute's standards and regulations to encourage safe and efficient operations. Qualifications: * A proven interest and knowledge in birds. Prior experience in avian captive breeding ideal, but not necessary. * A comprehensive understanding of avian imprinting. * Familiarity of incubation practices. * Lift, carry, push, and pull 50 lbs safely. * Ability to anticipate, identify, prevent, and solve problems. * Risk periodic exposure to fairly predictable and controllable hazards associated with wild animals and zoonotic diseases. * Possess a good attitude, common sense, and able to produce quality work in fast paced, high pressure situations. * Excellent communication skills. Convey information and ideas clearly and in a timely manner. * People management skills a plus. * A current tetanus shot and proof of a negative TB test (within 1 year) prior to starting. * A valid driver's license and reliable transportation. * Willingness and ability to work weekends, holidays, and overtime. * Proficient in basic computer processing. * Be able to pass background check and drug screen. How to Apply: Apply online at to submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 reference contacts. Applications will be accepted through August 7th, 2021. Why Audubon Nature Institute? * Opportunity to work for a large multi-facility company, including a zoo, aquarium, nature center, conservation center, and multiple parks and recreation spaces. * Dynamic, fun staff and co-workers * Competitive benefits package * Multiple health plans to meet your needs * Dental and Vision coverage available * 403B retirement plan with matching contribution