Burning up the Zoo
Current Smithsonian National Zoological Park (NZP) Bird House intern Shelby Burns is working on two projects simultaneously: Introducing and observing enrichment items available to the zoo’s Stanley Crane “Alice,” and helping keepers train one of the units Baltimore Orioles. She was a former pinniped behavior research intern at the zoo’s American Trail, and came to the zoo after graduating from James Madison University in 2013.
Interns at the National Zoo, Bird House, receive a four month long introduction into zoo keeping and learn about many types of rare and endangered birds. They have the opportunity to learn from many different animal care experts. They may conduct research, aide animal keepers in daily husbandry tasks, give animal demonstrations and help educated the public on animal conservation topics.
Shelby said, “I have found the National Zoo to be an environment rich with educational opportunities. It is a great opportunity for me to learn the best standards and techniques of animal care/husbandry. This type of world class environment is where I would like to continue to learn, in a setting where I know that animals are always the priority, and where there is a symbiotic blend of education, animal care and research.”