Intern Opportunities

Lead Whooping Crane Chick Rearing Internship

The International Crane Foundation (ICF) is seeking to fill a Lead Whooping Crane Chick Rearing Internship position for the Direct Autumn Release Project. This position lasts nine months from March thru December 2015. The Lead Intern will receive intensive hands-on training in the care and management of endangered crane chicks, specifically Whooping Cranes, for captivity and release. Additional duties will include organizing housing while in the field, tracking and monitoring released Whooping Cranes, data entry, light supervision duties, projects documenting chick development and/or release activities, food studies, updating chick weights and growth charts and end of year reports.

The Lead Whooping Crane Chick Rearing Intern may help with all aspects of the captive flock, and responsibilities will vary depending upon timing and number of chicks hatching. Daily cleaning, food and water provision, and care for chicks comprises the majority of the chick-rearing duties. Individual projects may be assigned as time allows. Other tasks assisting the Crane Conservation Department may include: video-monitoring of crane behavior, record keeping, speaking with the public, and adult crane care. Daily routine varies as the chicks grow and adjust with moving to new locations. Expect to spend between 1 to 8+ hours wearing a costume while exercising and socializing chicks. The rearing program starts at ICF's headquarters in Baraboo, Wisconsin. Chick rearing staff and interns will then relocate to one or two National Wildlife Refuges in the late summer and fall as the program dictates. Housing is provided, but accommodations will differ from on-site housing at ICF.


Aviculture Internship

The International Crane Foundation (ICF) is seeking to fill four Aviculture Internship positions for spring 2015.

Background: ICF is a leader in the conservation of the world's 15 crane species and is dedicated to providing experience, knowledge, and inspiration to involve people in resolving threats to cranes and the ecosystems vital to their long-term survival. ICF's world headquarters is located just outside Baraboo, WI (one hour north of Madison, WI). ICF exhibits the only collection in the world of all 15 species of crane. ICF is open to the public every day from April 15 to October 31. The Crane Conservation Department (CCD) is responsible for the care and management of approximately 120 birds year-round. ICF’s captive flock serves as ambassadors for their wild counterparts and is managed for the long-term survival of each species in accordance with AZA program recommendations. CCD Aviculture interns assist the fulltime staff in the day to day management of the collection. For more information, please visit our website at

Description: Aviculture Interns will gain valuable hands-on experience working with the ICF Crane Conservation Department and will:

  • Develop husbandry skills related to daily cleaning and feeding of the flock.
  • Learn and practice safe crane handling and restraint techniques.
  • Conduct breeding behavior observations and learn to identify crane behaviors and vocalizations.
  • Acquire an understanding of ICF’s captive propagation program, including an introduction of techniques for artificial insemination, egg incubation, and chick rearing.
  • Participates in the management of birds in public display areas to support site visitor programs and aviculture goals.
  • Achieve experience planning, designing, implementing, and evaluating a behavioral modification program.
  • Assist with routine crane facility maintenance activities.
  • Learn about ICF project initiatives related to crane ecology, behavior, and husbandry; field conservation and ecology; and ecosystem restoration techniques and processes.
  • Have the opportunity to volunteer with other departments and participate in job shadow experiences at ICF.
  • Meet and work with a variety of international colleagues and professional staff at ICF.
  • Assist in the completion of one or several projects related to the goals, work plan, and objectives of the ICF Crane Conservation Department (e.g. help with behavioral monitoring; data entry and analysis; research related projects, etc.)

Veterinary Student Preceptorship in Avian and Conservation Medicine

A four to six-week preceptorship in Avian and Conservation Medicine is being offered to interested veterinary students by the International Crane Foundation in Baraboo, Wisconsin.  Preceptors will train with the Veterinary Services Department in all phases of the clinical practice, but have opportunities for interaction with the Crane Conservation Department to learn captive propagation, husbandry and management of this unique family of birds. Preceptors can expect to gain practical experience in crane capture, transport, anesthesia, preventive medicine, disease surveillance and the contribution of veterinary medicine to crane conservation including field project support and professional consultations.  Preceptors are encouraged to complete and report on a research or laboratory project during their stay.  Opportunities for visiting the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine and the National Wildlife Health Center in Madison, WI will be made available to interested preceptors. 

No stipend is available for this position; however, on-site housing in the ICF Guesthouse will be provided depending on availability at the time the preceptorship is scheduled.  Applicants should send a cover letter, curriculum vitae or resume and one letter of recommendation from a faculty member of their home institution to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Director of Veterinary Services, International Crane Foundation, E-11376 Shady Lane Road, Baraboo, WI 53913.