Back to People Profiles

Mark Freeland

If you have taught your dog to "sit" or shake hands, then you know a little bit about what Mark does every day. He is a senior animalAny living thing that is not a plant. Most animals can move about freely. All use plants or other animals as food. All have sensory organs. trainer and has worked at the Zoo for 24 years. Mark has trained animals for shows, guest meet-and-greets, and behind-the-scenes tours. One of his favorite animals is a Bornean binturong named She Mao.

 

"She Mao is a reliable, consistent ambassador for her speciesA group of individuals that have many of the same characteristics, and are different from all other animals in some important way. Hamsters and mice are two different species of rodent.," Mark says. "She's playful and fun with a sweet and gentle personality, but she is businesslike, too."

 

Mark also likes working with animals that make him work, too.

 

"Otters can be really smart and challenging."

One of the not-so-nice parts about working with animals is that they do not live as long as we do.

 

Mark's all-time favorite animalAny living thing that is not a plant. Most animals can move about freely. All use plants or other animals as food. All have sensory organs. was Kusuit the North American river otter, who "lived to an old age, but I still miss him every day," he says.