Marine Mammals Department Internship

The Minnesota Zoo’s Marine Mammals Department is responsible for the daily management and care of the Zoo’s marine mammal collection.  This includes three male Northern Sea Otters and five female Hawaiian Monk Seals.  The Zoo’s group of Hawaiian Monk Seals is the only one exhibited in mainland North America.  This species is one of the most critically endangered marine mammals in the world.

Marine mammal interns help to prepare diets, assist in cleaning kitchen and animals areas, and are involved in behavioral enrichment.  They will have opportunities to learn and train with the sea otters through protected contact and support zoologists and interpretive naturalists as they train the seals.  Interns will learn to make and record daily observations and work with trainers to learn about marine mammal management, including animal training and nutrition.  Interns may interpret the marine mammal exhibits for Zoo visitors.

Marine Mammals Internship Working Conditions:

  • Schedule:
    • 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
    • 40 hours/week, 8 hours/day, 5 days/week, 12 weeks
    • Schedule may include one weekend day
    • Summer hours may include one day/week with a late arrival/late finish (6:30 p.m.)
  • Location:
    • Primarily indoors in the main Zoo building (Discovery Bay) and the marine mammals kitchen
  • Activity Level:
    • Medium activity required, including extensive walking indoors; standing to prepare diets; crouching, bending, stretching, etc. to maintain sanitary and safe aquatic systems
  • Animal Husbandry-Collection Interpretation work task distribution:
    • Interns in this work area perform more tasks associated with animal care than with public engagement