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Aquarist (Full Time)

Employer
Aza
Location
Miami-Dade County, Florida, US
Salary
Competitive
Closing date
Jul 4, 2022

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Sector
Academic / Research
Field
Conservation science
Discipline
Invertebrates
Salary Type
Salary
Employment Type
Full time
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Frost Science Museum

Aquarist (Full Time)

SUMMARY:

Provides assigned specimens with excellent day-to-day care through approved husbandry practices; keeps exhibits, reserve tanks, support equipment, and workspaces well maintained to Museum standards; responsible for monitoring animal health, water quality and accurate recordkeeping; coordinates animal health issues with supervisors and veterinarian; administers treatments and quarantine procedures; interacts with guests in a positive manner ensuring they have a great experience; participates in the acquisition/disposition, transport and acclimation of specimens; participates in the design, construction and maintenance of exhibits and reserve tanks, including life support material and equipment, as assigned. Fully accountable for animals and systems under care in assigned areas. Will be responsible for providing coverage for other areas as assigned. The aquarist works collaboratively throughout the Museum in a creative environment and contributes to the efficient operation of the department. This position works a schedule set by the supervisor and may encompass non-traditional days and hours and may be asked to report to work for animal care emergencies.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

* Establish and maintain an environment conducive to the health and well-being of all animals within the Museum's collection.
* Completes inspection rounds of specimens, exhibits and reserve tanks to check status and identify and report potential problems. Resolves problems independently where possible.
* Prepares food and feeds assigned fish and invertebrate collection as well as cross coverage for birds, reptiles and plants in accordance with dietary needs. Cleans and provides daily maintenance to food preparation areas, food preparation equipment and utensils.
* Prepares diets and diet supplements according to established protocols to ensure nutrition and vitamin content are maintained to keep specimens at peak health.
* Follows established feeding schedules and feeds appropriate amounts to maintain specimens at a healthy weight. Develops strategies to get in appetent specimens to feed. Monitors weights of specimens.
* Utilizes various feeding techniques and develops new strategies to overcome the challenges of getting the correct diet to all specimens in exhibits and reserve tanks housing multiple specimens and species.
* Maintains live food holding tanks and cultures, as assigned.
* Observes and recognizes medical conditions that may require attention and reports observations. Discusses best course of therapy with veterinary and Curatorial staff.
* Administers medications and implements routine quarantine procedures as needed.
* Maintains detailed, daily husbandry records and reviews records regularly to identify important trends.
* Maintains current knowledge of all specimens under their care and their natural history (biology and environmental needs) and husbandry requirements through hands-on experience, upkeep with current literature, keeper exchange programs, and symposium participation (as approved).
* Researches species to determine established or new husbandry techniques; Conducts literature review or hands on research.
* Works with Curatorial staff to initiate and oversee viable breeding, husbandry and conservation programs for particular species within the collection.
* Assists with animal physicals of specimens as needed.
* Participates in field collection trips using appropriate equipment (scuba gear, nets, seines, hook and line).
* Maintains cleanliness and artistic quality of the displays through cleaning acrylic and decor, scrubbing algae and removing debris to meet established Museum standards.
* Performs hydro-cleaning, water changes, backwashing and other procedures and provides necessary maintenance for pumps and filters.
* Maintains water quality standards and adjusts parameters as needed, determines appropriate schedules for maintenance.
* Performs water quality tests on a rotational basis.
* Cleans back-up areas including scrubbing, mopping, vacuuming water and pest control.
* Participates in system design and fabrication in keeping with animal behavior and biological needs.
* Participates in and presents at workshops, seminars, lectures, member programs and tours.
* Responds to diver, life-support and animal related emergencies, at times after hours.
* Coordinates daily activities though effective communication with staff and volunteers.
* Provides back-up support to other departments as needed.
* Adheres to all organizational and departmental policies and procedures
* Ensures that goals for an excellent visitor experience are met and maintained.
* Other duties as assigned or required

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES

* Knowledge of and skill in veterinary and husbandry procedures concerning fish, invertebrates, and other aquatic life.
* Knowledge of life support systems and water quality parameters for aquatic species.
* Must have keen observation skills and be highly detail-oriented and adept at problem solving.
* Skill in organizing resources and maintaining priorities.
* Skill in database management.
* Ability to construct and operate aquatic Life Support Systems, including plumbing and carpentry.
* Ability to use hand and power tools.
* Ability to work collaboratively to implement Museum and departmental goals.
* Ability to manage and impart information to a range of clientele, staff members and/or media sources.
* Ability to follow laws and regulations relating to the care of wildlife in accordance with the Museum and industry best practices.
* Ability to create, compose, and edit written materials using basic computer skills in Word, Excel, internet navigation, e-mail and spreadsheet programs.
* Ability to problem solve and troubleshoot problems.
* Ability to create, compose, and edit written materials.
* Ability to decide when to act independently and when to seek consultation of curatorial staff.
* Able to work well with supervisors and staff.
* Ability to mentor and train new interns, volunteers and staff.
* Ability to develop and maintain professional business relationships with co-workers, volunteer staff, interns, colleagues at other facilities and outside vendors.
* Ability to work holidays, weekends and a non-traditional work week as well as respond to after-hours emergencies.

EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE

* Bachelor's degree in Biological or Environmental Science is preferred. Associated degree in Biological or Environmental Science required.
* Previous experience in aquatic animal husbandry at an aquarium or zoo through volunteer work, internships or a full-time position (work in an AZA accredited facility is preferred).
* SCUBA certified.
* Driver's license or ability to get one.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS

The physical demands 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 regularly required to sit; use hands to handle, or feel; and talk and hear. The employee is required to stand and walk for prolonged periods of time, along with climbing and reaching with hands and arms. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move from to 50 to 70 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and ability to adjust focus.

Must be able to work in high and low/ places.

WORK ENVIRONMENT

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those as employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Work is performed both indoors and in outdoor settings. Outdoor work subject to temperatures up to 100 degrees, rain, humidity and sun. Work will also be conducted on a boat with the same outdoor conditions already listed.

CLEARANCE REQUIREMENTS

* Background clearance
* Drug screening as part of the Drug Free Workplace Program.
* Must have received or be willing to receive the COVID-19 vaccine(s) by date of hire to be considered for employment unless applicant is eligible for an exemption pursuant to all applicable laws.

How to Apply

Use the following link to apply:

https://www.frostscience.org/careers/

Frost Science Museum

Miami, FL
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