Jane Kennedy has worked at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park for 26 years. She is a lead keeperAn employee in a zoo who takes care of the animals. at the Safari Park, and she is also a board member (vice president) of the International Rhino KeeperAn employee in a zoo who takes care of the animals. Association. "My favorite animals to work with are the rhinos," says Jane. "Cornelius, the black rhino, was the best. He would actually lie down and roll over like a dog when you scratched him!"
Many of the animals in the Park's field exhibits are really large, like rhinos, giraffes, Cape buffalos, and gaur. Jane says the biggest things about these big animals can be their personalities. She says they are really funny, too. "One time, my driver's license slipped out of my pocket, and a giraffe found it and chewed it up and spit it out! Since it can still be read, it's still legal to use!"
Of course, when animals are this big, so are the messes they can make! "The grossest thing that has ever happened to me was when Kiazi, a rhino, had diarrhea, and she pooped on her friend, Nthombi," recalls Jane. "Yuck!"
Jane, like all our keepers at the Zoo and Park, loves her job. She is even bringing in a new generation of keepers! Her daughter, Katie, is also a keeperAn employee in a zoo who takes care of the animals. at the Park!