20:23 PM

ZooAmerica Celebrates Retirement of Legacy Team Member

Zoo Supervisor, Conservationist Tim Becker Retires After 44-Year Career

Hershey Entertainment & Resorts (HE&R) is proud to recognize and celebrate the retirement of Zoo Supervisor and Conservation Specialist, Tim Becker, after a 44-year career at ZooAmerica. Tim was instrumental in spearheading many conservation initiatives during his tenure, including breeding and releasing Golden Eagles - one of the first conservation projects at ZooAmerica! His dedication to the project was evident when he accompanied the juvenile Golden Eagles to their release sites throughout Pennsylvania and Georgia.

Next, Tim turned his attention to aiding in the recovery of the Peregrine Falcon population through breeding, artificially inseminating, and raising this endangered bird. As a testament to the success of his work, one of Tim’s released birds was credited with raising its own young at a site along the Susquehanna River. Federal and state conservation initiatives - including those of ZooAmerica - proved impactful, and the Peregrine Falcon was removed from the Pennsylvania Endangered Species list in 2021.

Another project to which Tim dedicated his time was the construction, placement, and monitoring of nest boxes for Barn Owls, Eastern Bluebirds, American Kestrels, Prothonotary Warblers, and Wood Ducks. In keeping with the ZooAmerica mission of promoting and encouraging the conservation of wildlife, Tim broadened the scope of his initiatives and involved the entire Zoo staff, participants in the ZooCamper program, and Milton Hershey School students.

In 2011, Tim started the Regal Fritillary project at ZooAmerica by partnering with Fort Indiantown Gap biologists. Each subsequent year, he has expanded the program with the help of other devoted staff members and outside partners. They have added more release sites, investigated better methods for overwintering the young, and studied the butterflies for disease. This project also enlisted colleges and government agencies as additional partners to move these efforts forward.

For more than four decades, Tim has been the vision behind conservation initiatives at ZooAmerica. We are proud of the legacy of care that Tim has imparted to his teammates at HE&R and to the community, and wish him a happy and well-deserved retirement! 

Visit ZooAmerica to further understand our team’s commitment to caring for natural resources, the environment, and the species that call North America home.