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Michelle and Furby a tawny frogmouth

Michelle with Furby the tawny frogmouth.

Name: Michelle Ferguson

Hometown: Falls Church, VA

Education: BS, Biology, Radford University

Assignment: Lands of Change: Australia and Beyond

On the job since: 2015

Previous experience: Smithsonian’s National Zoo (2011), Oglebay Good Zoo (2013), Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo (2014), Leesburg Animal Park (2014–15)

Favorite animal to work with: Furby the tawny frogmouth

Dirty jobs: Michelle’s advice to prospective keepers? Don’t be afraid to get messy. But it doesn’t stop at shoveling poop—while interning at Smithsonian’s National Zoo, she was responsible for processing tissues from animal necropsies. “It was gross at times, but always really interesting!”