Highest Rated Comments

arghyematey33 karma

I got to see that female in their exhibit!!! It was incredible. I heard that she started eating some of the fish she was housed with- big fish like tuna. I would imagine that is partially why she was released.

arghyematey15 karma

It's becoming more and more common to ask animals to voluntarily participate in their own health care. I trained one cheetah for a blood draw behavior (I'm still so excited about that) and we are working on the others! Our warthogs are tricky because they are smart and big babies with sensitive skin but we are working on it. Our rhinos act like they don't even notice- I actually just got my first blood from a rhino a few months ago and even with not being the most gentle (I tried, ok!) they didn't show a reaction... Besides asking for more alfalfa :)

arghyematey10 karma

Tell her to start volunteering like, yesterday at your local zoo. If you start early and work hard, it's a piece of cake to get hired to work with animals. It would also help her decide if it is actually something she wants to do- it's a lot of hard and messy work.

arghyematey10 karma

It can be dangerous but we try to do everything as safely as possible. I work protected contact with most animals, which means that I only interact with them when there is a barrier between me and the animal.

You should definitely go check out some behind the scenes stuff though! There is a TON that happens that the general public has no idea about, although we do try to educate people as much as we can. Ask about the SSP (species survival plan) too- it's fascinating how much planning goes into breeding animals and it's really important to maintain as much genetic diversity as possible.

arghyematey5 karma

HA! Nope, you must have just worked at a generous zoo. I am a zookeeper at a very large zoo and I make nothing near that.