JOB: Zookeeper, Auckland Zoo
QUALIFICATION: Certificate in Animal Management (Captive Wild Animals)
“I love dangerous animals! You wouldn’t get too close to elephants in the wild, so having the opportunity to work with Burma at Auckland Zoo has just been so surreal. I’d always wanted to be a zookeeper, it was my dream job, and Unitec has the only programme in New Zealand if you want to take that career path. Being a practical person, I loved the hands- on opportunities I had doing the programme and it gave me that much more experience and knowledge. It has helped me develop an amazing relationship with Burma and I’ve committed myself to her. Walking in to see her in the morning makes my day, and every day is different so it’s not just a job, it’s a lifestyle."
"Auckland is a zoo that’s changing all the time for the better, so as far as unexpected opportunities go, they’re never ending. We’re hoping to get companions for Burma. If we do, I will be part of this, travelling and working with the new elephants and providing them with the same care we give Burma. It will be something to look forward to."