This program offers interns hands-on animal training experience with the Mammals & Birds team. Interns are exposed to animal care and training activities primarily with belugas, harbor seals, and Asian small-clawed otters, with some possible exposure to sea otters, African penguins, and alcids. Interns work directly with trainers to support the daily care of the collection and learn the basics of operant conditioning. Interns will be paired with a mentor and guided through several training seminars and workshops to gain insight into operant conditioning techniques and how they are used in Georgia Aquarium’s Mammals & Birds program.
Interns’ daily responsibilities are to work alongside the trainers assisting with animal diet preparation, behavioral observations, environmental enrichment, animal care area clean up, and disinfections. Interns may also play support roles in assisting with animal training and husbandry sessions. Some of the skills interns will acquire during their internship are: diet preparation and feeding; water sampling; commissary clean-up; exhibit and husbandry area maintenance; behavioral observations; environmental enrichment; data recording and data entry; assisting team with animal training, handling and medical procedures; and other duties as assigned.
- Major in animal science, biology, marine biology, psychology or related field.
- Possess a strong desire to gain valuable experience working with marine mammals.
- Must be an independent worker and team player.
- Ability to lift 50lbs, climb stairs and work around saltwater.
- Must be physically fit.