Bridgette Ferran '14
Oakland Zoo- Oakland, CA
Major: International Relations
I interned in the Animal Management department of the Oakland Zoo. This department is overseen by a director and 2 zoological managers who are in charge of managing the Animal Management staff. These staff are the zoo keepers who each manage their own "string" of animals. Each string consists of several species of animals who the keepers are responsible for caring for. Interns in this program are assigned a string to work on in which they assist the keepers with their duties. I was assigned to String 4 which is mostly primates, including chimpanzees, gibbons, baboons and squirrel monkeys.
Main duties included but were not limited to: preparing diets, feeding the animals, cleaning animal exhibits and night houses, preparing and implementing enrichment, cleaning enrichment, assisting with training, and behavioral observation. One of the skills that I developed was creating challenging and engaging enrichment, necessary since the primates are so intelligent. I learned a lot about primates and primate social behavior.