Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital
Senior Veterinarian and Services Manager
Claude joined the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital as a veterinarian in March 2008. Originally from Quebec, Canada, she obtained her veterinary degree from the University of Montreal in 2000. Her passion for wildlife and zoo medicine was already obvious in vet school where she completed multiple externships in zoos and rehabilitation centres throughout both Canada and USA.
After graduation, she completed a one-year internship at the Raptor Centre adjoined to the University of Montreal where she obtained her skills in avian medicine. She then moved to Alabama, USA, to complete a one-year internship as a zoo veterinarian. She was finally employed as the associate veterinarian at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, USA, where she worked for 6 years.
Working as a zoo veterinarian has allowed her to become familiar with many animal species, including African, South American, Asian, and Australian species. She remains the veterinary advisor for the Eurasian Black Vulture SSP (Species Survival Plan) in the USA. She has published many articles in veterinary journals, including on polar bears and elephants. Her experience, knowledge, and organization skills have been a great addition to the Hospital team. She has completely fallen in love with all the Australian native species. She is the manager of the Veterinary Services here at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital.
Senior Veterinarian and Coordinator of Veterinary Research
Amber has had a passion for wildlife for as long as she can remember and dreamed of being a vet. Growing up, she experienced Australian wildlife through raising injured fruit bats and the occasional possum and wallaby.
Amber's real experiences with wildlife began 10 years ago when she travelled to South Africa for a wildlife symposium and game capture course. She loved it so much that she returned in the beginning of 2003 to continue her veterinary degree there for the year. That year, Amber was lucky enough to get a job with the DeWildt Cheetah and Wildlife Centre in South Africa. She worked as an assistant handler for one of their ambassador cheetahs and as a tour guide, helped with feeding and also assisted the vet with all sorts of procedures from minor injuries to limb amputations. She also got involved with the African Wild Dogs and Brown Hyena.
After returning to Australia in 2004, Amber completed an externship program with Taronga Zoo for four weeks and in 2005 spent some time at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and met the staff, which Amber says turned out to be the best thing she had done. This, along with her experiences overseas and in Australia, helped her get to where she is today - a fulltime vet at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital.
Amber is now one of the senior veterinarians at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and is the coordinator of veterinary research in our facility. In her spare time she is undertaking a research degree (MPhil) with the University of Queensland investigating disease and the reason for beach strandings in sea snakes. Her research will create the first complete set of health indices for sea snakes in the world and shed some light on what is currently happening in our marine environment.
In addition to this Amber is a core member of the Koala Research Network and volunteers her time and veterinary skills in various research projects, particularly in the area of koala research and conservation in Australia, and conservation projects globally. Amber has volunteered her time in numerous countries including Sumatra and Borneo where she provides valuable input in to veterinary care for endangered animals including tigers, orang-utans, and elephants.
Senior Veterinary Nurse
Nurse Vicky joined our Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital after 10 years as a veterinary nurse in private veterinary practice. Nurse Vicky loves wildlife and has spent many years helping sick and injured wildlife as a volunteer wildlife carer.
She was thrilled to come and work at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, where she can dedicate all of her time to caring exclusively for wildlife and helping our beautiful wild patients on their road to recovery. Vicky looks after the day-to-day care and medication of our patients, and helps our talented veterinarians with treatments and procedures.
Tarrah made a bold decision to move away from fast food industry and into captive animal/tourism industry in November 2009 when she joined our busy birds crew. In March 2015 Tarrah joined the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital crew.
Tarrah loves working at Australia Zoo because everyday brings a new amazing animal experience. Tarrah says that "The feeling you get when you are training an animal and you 'crack' it, can be very rewarding. Bruce the Brolga doing a dance for you or kisses from a Macaw...are all amazing."
When not at the zoo Tarrah enjoys playing softball and beach volleyball.
Senior Veterinary Nurse
Jennifer is an accredited veterinary nurse and joined our team in January 2008. She had previously worked for five years in both general practice and emergency critical care of domestic animals, and also volunteered and worked as a casual keeper in Taronga Zoo's bird show for over two years.
Jennifer moved to the Sunshine Coast from Sydney to take up a nursing position at our Hospital and is loving the variety of wild animals that come into our care, as well as exploring the biodiversity that South East Queensland has to offer. She has recently completed a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biodiversity and Conservation through Macquarie University and is currently undertaking post-graduate studies in Ornithology. It is a dream come true for Jennifer to work full time in wildlife conservation and is particularly interested in raptor and parrot conservation.
Cheryl is a qualified animal technician, technical officer, zookeeper and veterinary nurse with over 20 years experience with wildlife, domestic and farm animals.
Upon a visit in 2004 to the Sunshine Coast, Australia Zoo and the recently-established Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, Cheryl and her family decided to move from Melbourne with the intention of working permanently in the wildlife hospital.
Cheryl initially worked as a volunteer before becoming employed on a full-time basis. She has watched the hospital and its team grow over the past seven years, caring for and working miracles on a multitude of wildlife.
Senior Veterinary Nurse
For as long as she can remember Renee has been volunteering at a variety of animal organisations, and in 2004 the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital quickly became a favourite. Monday to Friday would see Renee working in a human genetics lab, while weekends would see lab coats replaced by scrub tops and cage cleaning.
Previously content with this "weekend fix", a trip to Africa in 2005 brought with it a realisation that wildlife rehabilitation was all she wanted to do. So after a decade in the lab coat, Renee quit her job and boarded a plane to Canada where she spent three years working at a native mammal centre. Here she was privileged enough to rescue, raise, care for and release a variety of animals including raccoons, black bears and beavers to name a few of her favourites.
Upon returning to Oz, Renee was ecstatic to join the AZWH team as a trainee veterinary nurse in 2010. Renee is excited for the adventure and challenges that this role will bring, and says "it is a privilege to spend my days surrounded by our amazing wildlife and a group of people so dedicated to giving them a fighting chance."
Cameron started at Australia Zoo in Oct 2013. Cameron’s favourite animals are the Red Pandas, because they are very inquisitive and bold for their size. Cameron loves how he gets to see kids and overseas visitors smiling faces when they get to hold/pat one of our Koalas.
One of Cameron’s amazing animal encounters was at home playing cricket as a child, when a Red-Bellied Black snake slide over his feet.
Outside of the Zoo Cameron enjoys Hiking, Playing Aussie Rules, reading, surfing, rock climbing and staying fit.
Calyce joined the Zoo Crew early 2013 and comes from a background of teaching music and drama. Her favourite aspect of working at Australia Zoo is the hands on experience with the animals.
Like many of our keepers Calyce does not have a favourite animal at the Zoo. She loves them all and finds it amazing how each animal has their own unique personality.
Calyce has travelled overseas following her passion for animals with her favourite experience walking Pumas in Bolivia.
Tyron joined the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in May 2013, bringing with him 7 years of Veterinarian Nurse experience along with a passion for the Australian Wildlife. Tyron has a particular love for the birds here at Australia Zoo with his favourite being the Whistling Kite.
Tyron's dream to work at Australia Zoo required him to relocate some distance but having been passionate about conservation and everything Australia Zoo stands for it didn't seem to worry him one bit.
Tyron likes to spend his spare time Bird Watching or playing some sports. Tyron also travelled over to Nambia and got the rare opportunity to sleep next to a Cheetah and some baby baboons.
Michelle started working as a kennel attendant with Guide Dogs Australia (NSW) in 2002 whilst studying to become a veterinary nurse. In December 2003, Michelle moved to QLD and continued her work with Guide Dogs Australia (QLD), before being employed with a domestic's veterinary clinic on the Gold Coast. She completed her qualifications as a Certificate IV Veterinary Nurse in 2005 and continued working with domestic animals.
In 2008, Michelle joined an Animal Emergency Clinic on the Gold Coast dealing with triage, trauma and emergencies of both domestic animals and wildlife. In addition to working in animal emergency, Michelle also started working as an animal behaviourist and trainer servicing Gold Coast vet clinics and co-hosting a Saturday morning radio segment on Hot Tomato 102.9. Michelle also started working at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Hospital as a part time zoo nurse and wildlife nurse in which she was responsible for the health checks and welfare of both the sanctuary animals and public wildlife.
In August 2012, Michelle left the Gold Coast to take up residence on the quieter Sunshine Coast as a full time Veterinary Nurse at AZWH. Michelle is currently also studying her Certificate III in Captive Animals.
Office Manager and Student Liaison Personnel
Kathy joined the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital as part of our administration team in August 2007. She had worked for over 17 years for another not-for-profit organisation and feels privileged to now be part of an "awesome and passionate team that all work so well together" caring for injured wildlife and promoting conservation. Kathy loves animals - pets have always been part of her family - and is learning more about wildlife every day.
AZWH Hospital Manager
Sarah joined the awesome Tour Team in March 2014. From an early age, Sarah has been involved in and around wildlife. Helping her mum care for sick and injured animals. "I love being around all the animals and, being in these beautiful surrounds is calming." Sarah just loves the Cheetahs as "they have grace, dignity, and beauty as well as being shy and majestic."
From June 2014 Sarah has taken on the role of Volunteer Coordinator within the Wildlife Hospital and has now also taken on the responsibility as Hospital Manager.
Sarah has come from Police Services with a background in child protection, and is also a Fitness Trainer.
Harrison has been working at the Zoo since October 2009 and has loved every minute of it.
I love it here at Australia Zoo. It is an amazing opportunity to work with so many different animals, no day is ever the same.
Outside of the Zoo Harrison likes to just relax and listen to some music,and camping and 4WDrving with my mates.
Karri joined the AZWH as a Vet Nurse in Jan 2015. "I love the conservation focus of the Zoo and wanted to contribute to Australia Zoo's more practical approach to education and conservation."
Having done behavioural research with Orangutans, Chimps and Vervet Monkeys in Zoos and in the field, Karri is keen to work with our native animals.
Outside of the Zoo, Karri can be found hiking, travelling and volunteer work.
Brenda joined the team as a cleaner at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in February 2012. Brenda has many years of experience in cleaning, mainly in the aged care industry and is thrilled to be working in such a unique team, working for wildlife conservation.
Nicola joined the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital March 2013. She is an experienced Vet Nurse who started out by volunteering with the RSPCA.
Nicola spends her days off exploring Nature Parks where she enjoys observing the wildlife and bird watching. She has a strong interest in reptiles and invertebrates and even keeps a few as pets. When asked why Nicola wanted to work at Australia Zoo she replied with "I love that Australia Zoo is so focused on conservation and research, I really want to be a part of that".
Tami began her veterinary career in 2001 in her hometown of Lynnwood, Washington. She quickly rose from kennel assistant to skilled vet nurse through intensive one-on-one training. Since then she has worked at a variety of veterinary clinics, including general practice, emergency, and a mixed small/large animal surgery. She also volunteered at Sarvey Wildlife Centre caring for animals of the Pacific Northwest such as raccoons, bears, beavers, porcupines and various native birds. In 2006 she was thrilled for the opportunity to travel to New South Wales and volunteer for six weeks the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital
Tami has had a keen interest in koalas from a very young age, and in 2010 she obtained a permanent residency visa and relocated to Australia in hopes to one day work with the animal she loves.
Since moving to Queensland she discovered she not only has a passion for koalas, but for all Australian wildlife. Upon learning of the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, she had a goal of one day working with us, and is now delighted to be part of the team of dedicated staff and volunteers.
In her spare time she enjoys anything outdoors such as camping, hiking and going to the beach. Her pets include a cat, 2 cockatiels and a cheeky green cheeked conure.
Robyn started at Australia Zoo in Oct 2013 and has a soft spot for Australian native animals making the Wildlife Hospital her ideal job. One of Robyn's most memorable animal experiences was having cuddles with a yellow-tail Black Cockatoo.
Christine Started with the Zoo Crew in Dec 2013. She was previously one of our awesome volunteers at the Hospital. She also has 25yrs experience in the IT industry as a Network Engineer. Christine loves working with the Koalas and has learned to appreciate them while working in their space and the challenges they are being faced with today. Outside of the Zoo Christine enjoys bushwalking, playing the Piano and Guitar, travelling.
Vet Nurse - Trainee
Cindy joined the Hospital crew in July 2014, and is currently learning the ropes as a Vet Nurse. Cindy has a varied background that will come in handy when helping our sick and injured wildlife, including 3 years as a Horse Trainer and endurance rider, and 4 years as a medical practice assistant.
Outside of the Zoo Cindy enjoys Horse riding, running, Skiing, surfing and Life Coaching.
Jamie-Lynn started with the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in July 2013. She has always loved animals and moved to Qld to fulfill her life long dream working with wildlife as a vet nurse; she has previously been working with domestic animals for 5 years.
Also being a zookeeper she found her passion for Flying foxes and koalas working at a wildlife sanctuary and volunteering for wildlife organisation with flying foxes to help rehabilitate these important species for their return to the wild.
Jamie-Lynn enjoys travelling around remote parts of Australia and has worked as a jillaroo on many cattle stations.
Lisa became a keeper in September 2013 after volunteering at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital for two years. As a primary school teacher of 13 years and now a keeper she enjoys combining her love of animals with teaching children about the need to respect, protect and care for our precious wildlife. Working at Australia Zoo and the Wildlife Hospital is a dream for Lisa as she adores animals and is passionate about conservation and education combined.
Dr Phil Moses
Veterinary Specialist Services (VSS)
Dr Philip Moses and his team at VSS are one of the many generous organisations who support the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital on an ongoing basis.
Whenever our veterinarians need assistance, Dr Moses performs specialised orthopaedic surgeries on koalas and other wildlife, free of charge. Although our vets do most of the orthopaedic surgeries ourselves, VSS' expertise is particularly crucial for difficult and complex fractures or injuries close to a joint, as they have specialised equipment and the experience to treat such injuries.
One of our vets and nurses will accompany the animal down to their surgery in Brisbane, and Dr Moses and his team perform the surgery at VSS' Underwood Hospital. The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital are grateful for this incredibly valuable service VSS provide to our wildlife.
Veterinary Specialist Services (VSS) - www.vss.net.au
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