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Animal Care and Wildlife Program Coordinator


Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center seeks a passionate, team-oriented educator as our Animal Care and Wildlife Program Coordinator. Manage our educational animals (including raptors, fish, and more) while also coordinating citizen science programming (including bird banding) to provide powerful learning opportunities for students of all ages. The Animal Care and Wildlife Program Coordinator collaborates with a team of educators responsible for teaching classes, writing and maintaining curriculum, and managing programs year round. More importantly, they co-teach with a dynamic team of captive and wild animals in support of everyday classes taught by Wolf Ridge Naturalists on and off campus. Wolf Ridge operations are centered on a 2000-acre campus with a 400-bed facility annually serving more than 12,000 program participants in northeastern Minnesota.

Read the full job description here.

An ideal candidate will have:

  • Bachelors degree in biology, zoology or related field
  • Three or more years of related experience and/or training as a teaching naturalist
  • Three or more years of supervision experience

Wildlife experience and knowledge should include:

  • 3 years experience handling, managing, and training educational animals
  • 3 years experience with live animal interpretation
  • Experience supervising and training staff and volunteers in handling and managing live animals
  • Preference for experience with citizen science practices including bird banding.

Job responsibilities include:

  • Develops, implements and evaluates animal training and presentations so that each species is exhibited humanely and educationally. Develops and updates a specific training program for each animal featuring its natural behaviors.
  • Responsible for the health of all the animals and coordinates with the Ely Vet Clinic and the Raptor Center as needed. Maintains safe, secure and sanitary animal exhibit areas and public spaces.
  • Writes reports and keeps records that accurately and completely record data regarding the health, feeding, and training of education animals. Maintains all necessary state and federal permits.
  • Prepares and purchases equipment, supplies, food and other resources as needed for the program.
  • Responsible for exhibit maintenance and repair.
  • Provides live animal care and training to student naturalists, program staff, interns and volunteers.
  • Coordinates daily animal care for 365 days/year with other trained animal care staff.
  • Conducts on-site and off-site education presentations of the Wolf Ridge live animals.
  • Responsible for the updates and revisions of assigned curriculum, ordering equipment, and library resources.
  • Repairs and maintains education kits, materials, and displays for assigned classes; maintains outdoor sites as assigned.
  • Stays current in the field of care and training of live animals.
  • Manage live animal budget.
  • General teaching requirement: this individual teaches between 1 and 5 classes per week, depending on scheduling needs. Average class load is 2 times/week. Also conducts one evening live animal presentation on a regular basis to all groups in residence, and brings the live animals into teaching classes as requested by other naturalists.
  • Other duties include, but are not limited to: shoveling and snow removal of outdoor and educational sites and other assigned duties by administration.

How to Apply

Complete the online Wolf Ridge employment application.

Additionally, please submit the following to jobs@wolf-ridge.org:

  1. Letter of application
  2. Curriculum Vitae or Resume
  3. a minimum of three reference contacts with description of the relationship

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

About Wolf Ridge

Founded on Earth Day in 1971, Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center remains the largest Residential Environmental Learning Center in the country. Today it welcomes over 15,000 visitors annually to its 2,000+ acre campus overlooking Lake Superior. Wolf Ridge offers year-round programing that includes summer camps, family programs, wilderness trips, higher education programs and more. The land surrounding campus includes rivers, creeks, lakes, high peaks,18+ miles of trail, and our own organic farm that supplies the meals served in our cafeteria. Visit Wolf Ridge to learn more.