On Call Biologist

Organization: California Academy of Sciences (AZA Member)
Location: San Francisco, California, United States
Job or Internship: Job

POSITION SUMMARY: Provides general husbandry care and support for the Academy’s living collection in various exhibit areas as assigned. Ensures the health and safety of the living collection during evening events. Cleans exhibits and holding areas, monitors animal health, makes frequent daily rounds, reports suspected animal or water quality problems to Assistant Curator, Curator and Animal Health Department, maintains accurate records. This position may participate in collection of specimens, animal transportation and shipments, and travel on Aquarium business. Work schedule will include weekends, evenings and holidays.


•Monitors animal health and responds to animal concerns during evening events

•Maintains an effective channel of communication with event coordinators and correlating departments during evening events

•Responsible for the general 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 daily husbandry care and exhibit maintenance including animal feedings, 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, including specimens for display and feeding

•Assists in the design and preparation of new display environments and exhibits

•Establishes and maintains positive, cooperative and effective working relations with fellow employees

•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

•Participates in Academy committees and work groups as needed

•Follows all Academy safety regulations

•Other duties of a similar scope and nature as otherwise assigned


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


The ideal candidate will possess a combination of the following education and/or equivalent experience:

•Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, Zoology, Marine or Aquatic Biology, or a related field of study

•Professional work experience in an aquarium, zoo or aquaculture facility that demonstrates increased learning and responsibilities may be substituted for the degree


•Basic knowledge of essential requirements for the living collection

•Excellent observation skills

•Previous work experience (may be paid or unpaid) in an aquarium, zoo or aquaculture facility

•Working knowledge of open and close aquarium life support systems

•Working knowledge of husbandry requirements for animal species typical to an aquarium or zoo

•Knowledge of natural habitats represented in Academy exhibits and the ability to duplicate them in a controlled environment

•Experience with exotic animals, aquarium fishes, invertebrates, plants, amphibians, reptiles and/or birds desirable

•Experience with scientific research projects

•Excellent observation skills

•Excellent verbal and written communication skills

•SCUBA certified or able to attain SCUBA certification, if required

•Willingness to seek further training in animal and plant husbandry

•Ability to present programs and effectively convey information to guests, the general public, the media, colleagues, and in professional meetings

•Excellent verbal and written communications skills

•Ability to work as a member of a team

•Working knowledge of computers

LANGUAGE SKILLS: 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.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS AND WORK ENVIRONMENT: 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 50 pounds.

•Must be able to climb stairs and ladders.

•Must be able to use extension poles, long-handled nets and shepherd’s hooks.

•Work with or adjacent to venomous and dangerous animals.


Please submit your cover letter and resume online at http://calacademy.snaphire.com. Note that the recruitment timeline for positions vary and depend on many factors, so it is impossible to accurately predict when a position will close. We appreciate your patience during this process. No phone calls please.

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and welcomes applications from individuals who will contribute to its diversity.

The California Academy of Sciences is a non-smoking facility. There is also no smoking in Golden Gate Park.