It’s National Zoo Keeper Week and we’re sharing the love! To recognize the dedication and hard work of our amazing zookeepers, we are posting an interview of a keeper each day this week. Kristina has worked with turtles in Australia, and recently found a passion for penguins.
Meet the Zookeeper: Kristina King
Q: How did you become a zookeeper?
A: “I always wanted to be involved in wildlife conservation in some capacity, so my education and career goals never wavered from that direction. After previously volunteering with sea turtles in Australia, I applied to be an Animal Care volunteer at the Calgary Zoo, because I knew it would be just as great of an experience. Being an animal care volunteer at the zoo was more than great! I felt I had found just how I wanted to pursue my passion for wildlife conservation and worked hard so I could be at the zoo full time.”
Q: When did you start working as a zookeeper for the Calgary Zoo?
A: ” End of June 2017; I can’t believe it’s already been over a year!”
Q: What’s your favourite animal to work with?
A: “That’s a tough one to answer, and I bet my answer will change with the years! Right now it would have to be the king penguins, because they go about their daily lives with me standing right there. It’s a real privilege to be able to see natural penguin behaviour up close.”
Q: What’s a great zookeeping story that you can share with us?
A: “Every morning we need to give the Humboldt penguins their daily vitamin pill fish – that almost always leads to laughing! They have no problem trying to steal each other’s fish, even right out of each other’s beaks. One time I was watching Sophie the Humboldt running back and forth past a tiny penguin-sized door, while being chased by other Humboldts who wanted her fish. It looked just like the old Scooby-Doo cartoons with them running back and forth between doors!”
Thank you for joining us for National Zoo Keeper Week 2018! Check out our blog to see videos of a different zookeeper each day from July 15-21, 2018.
The support of our community makes possible our critical work protecting wildlife and wild places. Your trip to the Calgary Zoo helps us sustain wildlife and wild places. Visit today and learn more about the work of the Centre for Conservation Research at the Calgary Zoo.