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Jackson Zoo cited by USDA for lack of employees

Jackson Zoo
Photo from the Jackson Zoo/Facebook

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has cited the Jackson Zoo for having an inadequate number of employees.

According to an October inspection conducted by the USDA, the zoo only had half of the staffers necessary to comply with regulations and was given until Feb. 1 to staff the vacant positions.

“The facility currently has only five out of 10 animal keepers who are working. The other five positions are functionally vacant due to personnel issues or true vacancies,” the USDA report stated. “As a result of the staffing shortage, employees are spending all day doing basic feeding and husbandry tasks while proactive maintenance programs, vegetation removal, and preventive pest control are not completed.”

As of Feb. 14, the Jackson Zoo had yet to fill all of the unoccupied jobs.

The USDA warns that the zoo’s deputy director and senior animal care supervisor, as well as the veterinary technician, are currently spending a large amount of time doing basic animal feeding and husbandry tasks, which are not normally part of their job, and to the detriment of their typical duties.

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