Biologist I

California Academy of Sciences
San Francisco, California, US
May 09, 2021
May 31, 2021
Employment Type
Salary Type
We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every ­one of the qualifications for the position.

Reporting to the Animal Care Manager this position is responsible for providing general animal care and support for the Steinhart Aquarium's living collection in various exhibit areas as assigned. Cleans habitats and holding areas, monitors animal health, makes frequent daily rounds, reports suspected animal or water quality problems to Animal Care Manager, Curator, and Animal Health Department, maintains accurate records, may participate in collection of specimens, may participate in animal transportation and shipments, and may travel on Aquarium business. Work schedule will include weekends, evenings and holidays. This position will support a diverse collection of animals including terrestrial, aquatic, and freshwater habitats.

We are committed to ensuring diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are intrinsic to Academy culture and operations, from recruitment and retention to science and advocacy. Explore Our Commitment to Racial Equity to learn about our intentional engagement of traditionally excluded groups in an effort to spark interest in or foster pathways to scientific careers.

Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable persons with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
  • Responsible for the general care and maintenance of one or more of the following: fresh and salt water aquariums, terrestrial invertebrate, reptile, amphibian, bird, plant and mammal displays and holding areas.
  • Provides a high standard of daily husbandry care and exhibit maintenance including animal feedings, exhibit and back of house cleaning, health monitoring and environmental sampling.
  • Participates in the animal enrichment and training program.
  • Assists in animal treatments and procedures as required.
  • Provides backup and support for areas assigned to other staff as the Primary and/or Secondary backup during their normal days off and holidays.
  • Actively seeks further training with all taxa represented in the living collection.
  • Assists in the acquisition of living specimens following the collection plan developed by Curators and Associate Director, including specimens for display and feeding.
  • Assists in the design and preparation of new display environments and exhibits.
  • Recruits, trains and supervises volunteers.
  • Effectively communicates to the Aquarium management and staff.
  • Follows all Academy and Aquarium safety regulations.
  • Participates in Academy committees and work groups as needed.
  • Becomes fluent in our animal data software program - ZIMS.
  • Establishes and maintains positive, cooperative and effective working relations with fellow employees.
  • Actively participates in a culture promoting trust, respect and accountability.
  • Presents programs to the general public, media and in professional meetings.
  • Conducts general tours of the Aquarium and its support spaces.
  • Answers questions from the general public through a variety of means.
  • Interacts with professional colleagues, guests, the media and the general public in a professional manner.
  • Other duties of a similar scope and nature as otherwise assigned.


  • Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, Zoology, Marine or Aquatic Biology, or a related field of study.
  • Previous work experience (paid or unpaid) in an aquarium, zoo or aquaculture facility preferred.

  • Basic knowledge of essential animal care and welfare requirements for the living collection.
  • Basic knowledge of USDA and AZA standards for animal care and welfare.
  • Basic knowledge of public aquarium/zoo operations, maintenance, record keeping and life support systems.
  • Basic knowledge of natural animal habitats and the ability to duplicate them in a controlled environment.
  • Basic knowledge of record-keeping software such as ZIMS, Formstack, and Google Drive.
  • Excellent observation skills.
  • Effective verbal and written communication skills.
  • Effective organizational and problem solving skills.
  • Effective at multitasking, adapting, and prioritizing.
  • Ability to present programs and effectively convey information to guests, the general public, the media, colleagues, and in professional meetings.
  • Ability to work as a member of a team and engage in a culture that promotes trust, respect and accountability.
  • Ability to utilize web-based communication and collaboration applications.
  • Familiarity with scientific research projects.
  • Experience caring for exotic animals, aquarium fishes, invertebrates, plants, amphibians, reptiles, birds and/or mammals.
  • Willingness to seek further training in animal and plant husbandry.
  • Ability to complete CPR/AED/First Aid Certification.
  • Must be able to work weekends and holidays on a routine basis.

  • Ability to read and interpret documents such as departmental protocols, safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals.
  • Ability to write routine reports and correspondence.
  • Ability to speak effectively before groups of customers or employees of organization.
  • Bilingual (spoken and/or written) in Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, or other non-English language preferred but not necessary for this position.

The physical demands and work environment described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand, sit, walk, and reach with hands and arms, and talk or hear.
  • Must be able to lift and carry 50lbs.
  • Must be able to perform repetitive motions 75% of the time.
  • Must be able to climb stairs and ladders.
  • Must be able to swim.
  • Must be able to use extension poles, long-handled nets and shepherd's hooks.
  • Must be able to work with, or adjacent to, venomous and dangerous animals.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: May 28, 2021 at 5:00 PM. Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis.

HOW TO APPLY: Please submit a resume and complete the brief online application.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of theSan Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, place of birth, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, height or weight, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.

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