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Keeper Aide: Small Mammal House

  • Golden Lion Tamarin on a branch

The Smithsonian's National Zoo’s Small Mammal House is home to an interesting mix of mammals, the majority of which are no bigger than a breadbox. Golden lion tamarins, armadillos, porcupines and naked mole-rats are some of the species found in the exhibit. Volunteers are needed to help animal care staff prepare food, clean enclosures, care for plants in the exhibits and create enrichment.

New volunteers must be able to commit to at least one shift per week for a minimum of one year. Available shifts are from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Age Range: 
Special qualifications: 
Volunteers should be reliable, responsible and physically fit. An interest in the exhibit species is a must. Some animal care experience is strongly preferred but not required.

Once accepted, new volunteers must complete online orientation training. Additional training will be provided on the job. There is a probationary period for keeper aides.

Washington DC
Zoo Support
Contact phone: 
Additional information: 

Select applicants will be interviewed by keeper staff, and those who are provisionally accepted will have background checks conducted, including fingerprinting, as a requirement for approval as a keeper aide. Once accepted, volunteers must submit proof of required vaccinations, including tetanus and a negative TB test, to the Zoo's health unit.