Musk Ox Farm Internship in Palmer, AK

Musk Ox Development Corporation
  • Seasonal
  • Palmer, AK
  • Housing provided, plus 350$ monthly stipend USD / Year
  • This position has been filled

The Musk Ox Farm is searching for upbeat individuals who are willing to work hard and learn about this arctic
ambassador at the only facility of this type in the world. Applicants must be patient and do well under stressful
situations. This is a physically demanding job, with lots of walking and time on your feet every day in varying
Alaskan weather conditions. Weather can vary greatly throughout the year from -30ºF in January to summer
temperatures as high as 90ºF. Summertime temperatures are typically in the 40ºF-70ºF range. Applicants will be
working directly under the supervision of the herd manager and will work individually and as part of a team.

We currently care for 76 musk oxen on 75 acres of land. We promote gentle handling, which requires patience,
confidence, and compassion. Weekly weighings and trips to the barn for care and combing are accomplished by
herding musk oxen on foot. For this, we are seeking individuals who are confident, but not aggressive when working
with our herd. You will learn to work with musk oxen and see that each has its own personality, which will help you
to learn how different animals respond to different stimuli. Herd health is our main priority. You will be learning
basic husbandry including the nutritional and environmental needs of musk oxen. If the situation arises you will be
assisting in the treatment of sick or injured musk oxen as necessary. To assure a lifetime of low-stress interactions
with our herd staff, socializing calves is one or the largest priorities here on the farm. We need to teach our young
animals that they are safe and to be comfortable with staff. By building mutual respect we make it possible to
employ our gentle handling protocols throughout their lifetimes. There is daily record keeping of hay, feed and
feeding schedules and, calf observations. April and May are the months of our combing season when we harvest
their valuable qiviut fiber.

We hand-comb all our musk oxen for their qiviut (underwool) and recording every ounce
as it is collected. Basic daily duties include but are not limited to feeding, cleaning and behavior observations as well
as building and fixing fences, collecting browse, and weed whacking. There will be lots of time spent outdoors, rain,
snow or shine. During April and May, with combing and calving, we will be working odd and possibly long hours
which may include split shifts to accommodate agritourism at the farm. Interns will also be involved in all aspects of
the nonprofit, learning about our business, membership and educational programs.
Interns are needed from mid-April through August. Exceptions can be made outside of these dates, but preferences
will be given to those who are able to contribute when needed most, please inform us regarding your availability in
your cover letter. The schedule is intended to be 40 hours per week, however, as a working farm this can vary. Basic
housing is provided on-site, as well as a $350 per month stipend.

We are seeking individuals who are pursuing a university degree in animal science, wildlife biology, or are looking
for experience prior to pursuing advanced degrees in same or veterinary medicine. Consideration will be given for
other relevant education.
Motivated and self-starting.
Strong work ethic
Previous work with ungulates/ruminates is preferable.
Patience with animals and colleagues alike is required.
Ability to remain beneficial and flexible with unexpected events and capable of reacting quickly and with a level
Take and follow directions well (including following the directions at the bottom of this document).
Able to work alone or with a group and under sometimes stressful conditions.
Must have own health insurance.

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