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Behavioral Animal Research

Assignment Responsibilities

Volunteers contribute to scientific research at the North Carolina Zoo. Through observing and recording behavioral data on the Zoo’s animals, volunteers provide critical information to our animal care teams that help shape management plans. Volunteers closely observe predetermined animals and record behaviors using a handheld tablet. Through working with curatorial and animal staff, volunteers get an inside look into animal management and directly contribute to improving the lives of animals. This research is part of our overall goal to continuously assess and enhance the welfare of our animals.

Time Commitments

Available Shifts: Year-Round, 7 days a week, 9:30 am - 1:00 pm or 1 pm - 4:30 pm.

Volunteers should be available to establish and commit to two shifts each month for a minimum of six months on a recurring schedule of the same day every other week. (For example, every other Saturday.) Variations from the requested schedule must be approved in advance.


Volunteers will complete training on software and tablets (provided), animal behavior observational training, and behavior identification.

Age Requirement

Minimum age requirement is 18 years old.

Apply to Volunteer

Interested in becoming a Zoo volunteer? Complete the online volunteer interest form and you will be contacted regarding orientation and training. Please complete only one form regardless of the area of interest. 

Complete a Volunteer Interest Form