Cairns Tropical Zoo,
Queensland, Australia - (Avery Skelton)
Avery - "This internship was absolutely the best
decision I have made since deciding to attend UVM. It offers a
chance to participate fully in the daily tasks inherent with running a
zoo of this size."
Cairns Tropical Zoo is the largest
and most diverse wildlife attraction in Tropical North Queensland whose
philosophy is that personal interaction with animals encourages a
greater understanding of native wildlife and promotes the need to
preserve their natural habitats.
Avery's goal was to gain an understanding of what it takes to work with
wild animals, especially wild animals she is not familiar with.
She also wanted to become familiar with what goes on
"behind-the-scenes" in a zoo. From this experience Avery hoped to
learn about how to handle and care for many different types of wild
Avery completed 3-week rotations through three departments at the
Cairns Tropical Zoo: Birds, Reptiles, and Mammals. During
each rotation she learned how to care for various species of
animals. Her responsibilities centered around cleaning exhibit
areas, diet preparation, behavioral observation, etc.
"Since the Cairns Tropical Zoo is
rather small, it allows interns to be challenged and have the
opportunity to do everything they are capable of. Knowledge is acquired
through working hands-on as well as spending hours upon hours with zoo
"In addition to the experience at the
zoo, the internship brought me to another country and I found myself
immersed in another culture."
"Living with Australians and working
forty or more hours a week with wildlife not found in the US, was a
great glimpse into the breadth of opportunities available to one in the
field. It was the most enjoyable real-world learning experience
one can have!"
More information can be found