Senior Keeper (Birds)- Auckland Zoo

Posted: 2 January 2024| Full time | Auckland Wide, NZ

He angitūtanga: The opportunity

Auckland is a global city with stunning scenery, wonderful beaches, and sub-tropical islands. It is also a city with one of the most progressive zoos in the world. At Auckland Zoo, wildlife conservation and environmental sustainability are at the heart of everything we do.   

Our mission is “to bring people together to build a future for wildlife” and we do this by demonstrating exceptional care for wildlife, inspiring our visitors to value wildlife, conserving wildlife in the wild, and building a high-performance organisation.  

As a Senior Bird Keeper, you will bring specialist avicultural expertise and skills and will work as part of a team responsible for the daily husbandry and management of bird collection and support cutting-edge conservation in New Zealand and the Pacific region. 

This is a unique opportunity to play a key role in the development of the Zoo’s bird section, to actively contribute to conservation both in the zoo and in the field, to work with some of the world’s most extraordinary birds, and to provide exciting visitor experiences, which inspire and empower people to take positive action for wildlife and the environment.

Working on a rotating roster system including some weekends and public holidays, we are a fun and enthusiastic team, who thrive in this challenging and rewarding area and who work in innovative areas on an international level. This position reports to the Team Leader.

He kōrero mōu: About you

To be considered for this role, you must demonstrate all of the following:

  • A minimum of five years’ professional experience in the best-practice husbandry of birds.
  • Demonstrable proficiency in avicultural techniques including artificial incubation and hand-rearing techniques across a broad range of bird taxa and especially passerines.
  • Relevant Bachelor degree and/or Certificate in Zoo Animal Management and/or relevant equivalent experience.
  • Proven ability to carry out and supervise daily keeping duties to a high standard ensuring all husbandry and welfare needs are met.
  • Experience in bird operational training/conditioning and behavioural enrichment.
  • Self-motivation and demonstration of good teamwork.
  • Effective communication skills and able to perform public animal encounters.
  • Experience providing supervision, guidance, and support to junior members of the team and the ability to effectively train colleagues in specialist skills
  • Strong organisational skills, aptitude for creative problem-solving and ‘can-do’ attitude.
  • Commitment to and understanding of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums strategies for Animal Welfare and Conservation.
  • Prior ZIMS record keeping experience.
  • Understanding of small population biology and management.
  • Current driving licence valid in NZ.

Additionally, preferred candidates would show: 

  • A track record of innovative husbandry and research.
  • Commitment to and experience with undertaking field work and/or bird husbandry in isolated locations for extended periods.
  • Project management experience.
  • Mist-netting and wild bird banding experience/qualifications.
  • Prior research and scientific writing experience.
  • Studbook keeping experience.

A high level of energy and physical fitness will enable you to meet the daily challenges of the role. 

To review the full position description please click here:  PD – Senior Keeper

Ngā āhuatanga kei a mātou: What we offer

Annual salary NZD $71,973.00 per annum

We also have an ever-growing availability of discounts and partnership benefits, for a snapshot of these please click here: Benefits  

Tono mo te mahi/To Apply

  • Please provide a cover letter
  • No need to add your roles in the non-mandatory fields if your CV is up to date
  • Applications close at 11.59pm on Wednesday 31st January 2024

For further information on Auckland Zoo, please visit our website: or contact Gina Seward via 

Please note that if you are applying from overseas, we strongly recommend you seek advice from immigration New Zealand on the visa application process and your likely eligibility before applying

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited is an equal opportunity employer (EOE) and we are committed to providing a working environment that embraces and values diversity and inclusion. If you have any support or access requirements, we encourage you to advise us at the time of application to assist you through the recruitment process. 

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited strongly encourages our employees to be fully vaccinated.

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) is the global alliance of regional associations, national federations, zoos and aquariums, dedicated to the care and conservation of animals and their habitats around the world.

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