Zookeeper Displays Boa Constrictor

Zookeepers provide the day-to-day care for animals in zoological parks. They prepare the diets, clean and maintain the exhibits and holding areas, and monitor the behavior of animals that range from the exotic and endangered to the more common and domesticated. Zookeepers interact with visitors and conduct formal and informal educational presentations. They sometimes assist in research studies, and depending upon the species, may also train animals. Zookeepers may also be known as animal caretakers. 

Next Section: History

Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Animal Caretakers
Duties Provide daily care for animals in zoos
Salary Range Below $25,000 to $50,000
Work Environment Indoors/Outdoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country
Minimum Education Level
  • Associate's Degree
School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Speech
Experience Previous experience as a keeper or trainer required
Personality Traits
  • Hands On
  • Problem-Solving
  • Scientific
  • Interpersonal
  • Scientific
  • Teaching
Certification or Licensing None
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook About as Fast as the Average
Career Ladder
  • Zoologist or Curator
  • Area Supervisor or Assistant Curator
  • Senior Keeper
  • Zookeeper
  • Zookeeper Trainee