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Lepidopterist Intern at the Gardens on Spring Creek

Butterfly Pavilion
Fort Collins, Colorado, US
Closing date
Jan 29, 2022

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Academic / Research
Conservation science
Salary Type
Employment Type
Lepidopterist Intern at the Gardens on Spring Creek

Supervisor: Butterfly Coordinator

About Butterfly Pavilion: Here at Butterfly Pavilion, we transform the way people think about invertebrates. These small but mighty animals that surround us are so much more than people think. They are everywhere, because everything depends on them. They are the hidden heroes of the animal kingdom. As the leader in invertebrate knowledge, inspiration and connection, Butterfly Pavilion works to foster an appreciation of these critical animals by educating the public about the need to protect and care for threatened habitats globally, while conducting research for solutions in invertebrate conservation. Whether it is providing unique, hands-on learning experiences in our exhibits and educational programs, conducting new research that sets the standard for zoos across the country or building innovative solutions for species and habitat conservation in countries around the world, Butterfly Pavilion is leading the way in ensuring invertebrates are protected for the future.

Looking forward, we are committed to providing the most enriching experience for our audience, being recognized as a scientific authority, and being a leading educational resource on invertebrates. To this end, Butterfly Pavilion has begun the early stages of launching a $40 million Capital Campaign to expand Butterfly Pavilion into the Center for Invertebrate Research and Conservation (CIRC) in a brand new, state-of-the-art facility in 2022.

A large part of who we are as an organization is how we interact with each other. Valuing our facility, guests, donors, and our team is a priority, without these puzzle pieces we can't make it all work, these Core Values guide us throughout our day. We Love What We Do at Butterfly Pavilion, we Make Science Cool by Going Above and Beyond for all guests, donors, and team members while also Leading Change in invertebrate conservation. We Know Our Stuff and work to have a healthy culture by Being Positive and Welcoming to All. These aren't just words, but words for us to live by here at Butterfly Pavilion.

The Gardens on Spring Creek, Fort Collins, CO: The Gardens on Spring Creek is the community botanic garden of Fort Collins, Colorado. The 18-acre site opened in 2004 as part of a vital public/private partnership between the City of Fort Collins and the Friends of the Gardens on Spring Creek. The Butterfly House at The Gardens on Spring Creek emerged as a result of the new partnership between The Gardens on Spring Creek, the City of Fort Collins, and Butterfly Pavilion. The Butterfly House opened in November 2019 and currently showcases hundreds of North American butterflies with the help of Butterfly Pavilion zookeepers.

Commitment: Internships are aligned with school trimesters. Typically, 20 hours per week, not to exceed 24 hours per week, Saturday and Sunday required

Position Summary: Butterfly Pavilion is seeking a creative, highly motivated, and energetic individual to assist in butterfly and moth care, handling, and exhibit interpretation as part of a team of talented and experienced staff and volunteers at the Gardens on Spring Creek location. The primary goal of the Butterfly Pavilion Internship is for individuals to gain knowledge and hands-on training in invertebrate animal husbandry and education.

Pay: $13.00 per hour

Key Skills Learned:
  • Lepidopteran animal care
  • Interpretation skills
  • TRACKS animal care software experience
  • Self-directed research project

Key Responsibilities:
  • Assist the GOSC curatorial team in day-to-day care of all Lepidopteran animals on exhibit and behind the scenes, recording care in animal record management system, TRACKS
  • Work independently in the Flight House when the supervisor is not on site
  • Provide interpretive support to the GOSC Education staff in the exhibit
  • Use live animals to demonstrate science-based concepts to guests
  • Uphold AZA accreditation standards for animal welfare
  • Create meaningful interaction between the exhibit and guests for a deeper and more thoughtful experience and make connections between exhibit topic, conservation, and daily life
  • Comply with USDA containment standards
  • Maintain a clean working environment
  • Help develop and execute an independent project, focused on Lepidoptera and/or Exhibit Interpretation, to emphasize particular interest and expand the knowledge base of the Curatorial and Education Departments of Butterfly Pavilion. Present project at Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, CO near end of semester.
  • Serve as a resource to guests in the Butterfly House of The Gardens on Spring Creek
  • Uphold Butterfly Pavilion's core values

Training: Successfully complete New Volunteer and Intern Orientation and All Team Training.

Qualifications & Skills:
  • Preference given to those pursuing a degree in biology, environmental sciences, or related fields. Recent graduates also accepted.
  • Interest in invertebrate animal husbandry and care
  • Interest in engaging children and adults with environmental education about science, invertebrates, and conservation
  • Willingness to work with volunteers and staff
  • Basic computer skills (word processing, spreadsheets)
  • Willingness to handle animals (all training provided onsite)
  • Criminal background check
  • Has current tetanus vaccination or ability to receive vaccination before start of internship
  • Ability to travel to Westminster, CO for orientation and for meetings as needed

Minimum Age Requirement:

  • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age

Physical Demands:
  • Able to work in small spaces or awkward positions that require bending or stretching
  • Able to tolerate strong odors such as dust, animal fecal matter, etc.
  • Able to work in a hot, humid environment for extended periods of time

Sustainable Impacts:
  • Intern will acquire experience in an AZA-accredited facility
  • Intern will complete a self-directed research project under the leadership of intern supervisor
  • Butterfly Pavilion will partner with local schools to provide learning opportunities for students via internship program

  • Intern will complete a workplan of learning objectives
  • Intern will attend a mid-semester review of performance with feedback for improvement

Application Deadline:

  • Spring Term - November 1
  • Summer Term - April 1
  • Fall Term - July 1

Start Date:
  • Spring Term - starts in January
  • Summer Term - starts in May
  • Fall Term - starts in August

Apply: Click here to apply with a resume and cover letter:

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