Keeper Sophie has been with the Wild Sea team since she came to Melbourne Zoo three and a half years ago.
It’s a busy place to work, from preparing fish for all the animals and scrubbing the seal yards first thing in the morning to monitoring the water in the fish tanks, checking the seal pool water filtration system, and feeding the seals, penguins, and pelicans.
One unusual aspect of the job is Scuba diving to clean the seal and penguin pools.
Sophie says "I’m a wimp when it comes to the cold, so my least favourite jobs are getting the frozen fish out of the freezer and diving in our pools in winter!"
She adds that "without a doubt, my favourite job is creating a relationship with the animals in Wild Sea.
"Training the seals and being a part of their day to day life.
"Diving in summer when it’s nice and warm is fantastic, and so is being part of a team that is so committed to conservation and cleaning up our oceans."
Sophie is the leader of a project group working on a coastal community event called ‘Seal the Loop Action Day’ based on the Zoo’s marine conservation campaign aiming to reduce the amount of litter in the ocean, which is potentially harmful to marine wildlife.
She explains that "local schools and community groups at Rye and Warrnambool will be joining us to make sure that this event has a real and positive effect on the health of our coast. We aim to gradually expand the event right along our coastline in years to come."