National Zoo Keeper Week – Amy’s Story

From July 19-25, zoos all over the U.S. are celebrating National Zoo Keeper Week. Here at the Houston Zoo, we are honored and privileged to have such amazing professionals on our team. We got a chance to sit down with a few of our keepers and hear their stories. Check back each day to see new keeper profiles during this great week celebrating zoo keepers!


Amy Lavergne – Senior Zookeeper in the Children’s Zoo

photo-2I have known I wanted to work with animals for most of my life. When I was 5, I went to Brookfield Zoo as a kid and saw their dolphin show. After that, I knew I had to give up my life long dream of working at Dairy Queen to work with animals. I did the zoo crew program at the zoo in my hometown and eventually worked there. After graduating from the University of Illinois with a degree in animal biology, I was able to get a job at the Houston Zoo. Fast forward 14 years and I’m still loving what I do. I’m a primary keeper in the desert/prairie section of the Children’s Zoo.  I take care of bats, mongoose, roadrunners, and various smaller animals every day.  I also train pigs, birds of prey, our skunk, and our bobcat. One of the favorite parts of my job is teaching people about the animals that I take care of.

“What do you want people to know about your job?” – It is a lot of hard work, made even harder in the heat!