Aquarist I

Aquarist I
Reports to: General Aquarium Curator
Schedule: Full-Time, Tuesday-Saturday. Availability to work weekends, holidays, and irregular hours subject to change.

Job Summary

Facilitate the day-to-day operations of the Reiman Aquarium within Discovery World Science + Technology Center.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following.  To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  Other minor duties may be assigned.

  • Work with an assortment of fish, elasmobranchs, aquatic invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians, misc. coral, crustaceans, jellyfish, and freshwater plants
  • Prepare diets for the animals and perform routine feedings
  • Ensure optimal care for Aquarium or Terrarium animals and plants by testing water quality, performing water changes/changing out substrate, making saltwater as needed, and monitoring temperature and humidity levels
  • Monitor and maintain multiple exhibits and their life support systems; conduct backwashes, water changes, protein skimmer, pump, and UV sterilizer routine maintenance, and more
  • Help design exhibits and help select animals for the Aquarium. Assist with acquisition and transport as needed
  • Assist with aquaculture, quarantine, and treatment procedures as directed by Supervisor
  • Dive for routine maintenance in warm and cold-water temperatures using equipment provided by Discovery World
  • Work individually but also collaborates and coordinates with coworkers and Supervisor to complete shared responsibilities, such as daily opening and closing checklists, monthly checklists, and any other team projects
  • Perform biopsies, necropsies and administer medication under supervision of management or veterinarian as needed
  • Fill out appropriate checklists and logs for animal acquisition, health, relocation, mortality, and routine maintenance
  • Acquire knowledge continuously of all animals, life support, and husbandry tasks in the Aquarium and continually update assigned exhibits Standard Operating Procedures as needed
  • Keep back of house and Aquarium work areas clean and organized
  • Work in partnership with Guest Services, Education Department, Shop, Public Relations, and other Discovery World departments to ensure an excellent visitor experience
  • Participate in public speaking programming, work with children and perform tours, theatre shows, teach classes, and other educational opportunities
  • Mentor and help train new Interns and Volunteers on day-to-day operations
  • Participate in weekly Aquarium, and monthly all-staff meetings
  • Ability to open, close, run the day-to-day operations of the Aquarium alone, in the absence of the Curator and other Aquarists, when necessary
  • Ability to network within the Aquarium, Zoo, and/or science and technology industry
  • Be able to spontaneously adapt and be flexible as every day is different
  • Perform all other duties as assigned

Work Environment
Listed below are required key points regarding the environmental demands and work environment of the job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.

  • Physical effort in handling objects over 50 lbs and repetitively carrying and lifting of heavier items
  • Physical occupational risk exposure (such as cuts, burns, exposure to toxic chemicals, envenomation risk, etc.)
  • Frequent walking, bending, kneeling, climbing ladders and stairs, etc.
  • Exposure to environments which involve fresh and saltwater, dirt, odors, noise, a variance in hot and cold room temperatures, as well as diving in saltwater and freshwater exhibits of temperatures between 60-84 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Motor coordination with finger dexterity, most of the workday
  • Ability to fit into smaller spaces, when needed

The requirements listed below are representative of the qualifications necessary to perform the job.

Education and Experience:

  • Bachelors Degree in a Marine or Freshwater science related field, such as Biology, Ecology, Zoology, etc.
  • Minimum of one year, paid or unpaid, work experience in an Aquarium and/or Zoo setting
  • Open Water SCUBA Certification
  • Valid Drivers License

Other Knowledge, Skills, or Abilities Required:

  • Some knowledge of basic hand tools and plumbing with PVC
  • Life Support Operations
    • Bead and sand filtration, smaller filtration systems
    • UV sterilization
    • Ozone in relation to life support and water quality
    • Protein skimmers
    • Pumps and plumbing
  • Water quality
    • Knowledge of the Nitrogen Cycle as it relates to Aquaria
    • Basic testing knowledge of Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, chlorine, dissolved oxygen, pH, and other water quality standards and testing
  • Experience with Terrariums and Aquariums and working with fish, elasmobranchs, aquatic invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians, misc. coral, crustaceans, jellyfish, and freshwater plants

Additional Preferred qualifications includes:

  • Advanced and Rescue SCUBA Diver Certification
  • Full Face Mask Training
  • Current CPR/First Aid/AED Training
  • DAN Emergency Oxygen Provider Certification
  • AALSO Level 1 certifications
  • Bilingual
  • Coral propagation and care
  • Aquaculture and fish fry rearing/Cold-water Moon Jellyfish aquaculture
  • Live insect culture breeding and care experience

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