THE BRONX - The Wildlife Conservation Society says it will create more than 1,000 jobs this year in zoos, aquariums and other venues, helping alleviate New York City's unemployment problem.

Among the open slots are more than 500 seasonal jobs at the Bronx and Prospect Park zoos, as well as at other conservation institutions. The Wildlife Conservation Society is collaborating with the city's Department of Small Business Services to streamline the recruitment process.

"We've sent nearly a thousand qualified candidates to fill 750 open positions," says Mayor Michael Bloomberg, "and I'm happy to say more than 100 New Yorkers have already been hired."

The WCS expects to fill all the positions by the end of April.