Zoological Horticulture Worker

Organization: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium of Metro Parks Tacoma (AZA Member)
Location: Tacoma, WA, Country
Job or Internship: Job



Metro Parks Tacoma is seeking a Zoological Horticulture Worker to perform a variety of skilled duties involved in the installation, growth, care and maintenance of the horticulture collection and grounds for the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium. This position may also provide work direction to laborer/custodial staff, seasonal staff and volunteers. Zoological Horticulture Workers shall have a demonstrated level of landscape and grounds maintenance abilities.

CLOSING DATE: Applications must be postmarked by May 22, 2013

STARTING PAY RANGE: $18.32 - $25.35 per hour, grade 1025

CLASSIFICATION: This position is classified as a career full-time non-exempt position. This position is eligible for benefits. This position is a represented position and the candidate selected will be required to join the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 286 and pay union dues.


 Participate in all aspects of landscape maintenance and installation. Assist the Horticulturist/Arborist in design and construction of new beds and exhibits.

 Operate a variety of equipment and machines including riding mowers, hand mowers, backpack blowers, weed eaters, forklift, high lift, trucks, bobcat, air compressors and other equipment not requiring a commercial license; maintain equipment and tools in safe and proper working condition. Operate a variety of specialized tools and equipment, including rototillers, bobcat, pesticide sprayers, soil mixers, and other hand and power tools.

 Perform landscaping, plant, tree, and turf maintenance and other horticultural activities; prepare soil for seeding and sow grass seed; repair and maintain flower beds; mix and apply pesticides and chemicals according to established procedures and guidelines.

 Perform grounds maintenance and horticultural duties such as planting, transplanting, propagating, mowing, edging, aerating, trimming, watering, fertilizing, removing, and weeding of lawns, trees, and shrubs.

 Assist and oversee seasonal staff in the removal of leaves, backpack blowing, garbage, litter, recycling, and removal of snow and debris.

 Inspect, maintain, install, and perform repairs to irrigation systems.

 Assist in the requisition and purchase of supplies and materials according to established procedures; obtain competitive prices; prepare and maintain related records and reports; submit to appropriate personnel and department as required; operate a vehicle to pick-up and deliver supplies and materials.

 Assist the Horticulturist in monitoring and controlling plant pests, insects and disease; inspect plants for infestation; apply pesticides and remove plants as required; prepare and maintain related records.

 Assist Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium keepers and staff with horticultural questions and/or maintenance within the animal exhibit areas.

 Utilize principles of Plant Health Care (PHC) including Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques in the maintenance of the horticultural collection.

 Assist the Horticulturist/Arborist in the future development of the Horticultural collection.

 Assist with training temporary staff and provide work direction to others as assigned.

 Attend staff and committee meetings. Conduct horticultural tours as assigned.

 Perform other duties as assigned.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor’s degree in horticulture or 4 years of experience in related field required. Experience in horticulture within a zoological environment preferred.

LICENSE & OTHER REQUIREMENTS: Must have valid driver's license with good driving record. Must have the ability to obtain a valid First Aid and CPR Card within the probationary period. Ability to pass training in the area of forklift, high lift or other specialized equipment. Obtain and Maintain annual pesticide license including but not limited to the categories of Ornamental Insect and Disease, Ornamental Weed, Right of Ways, and Pest Control Operator. License must be obtained within probationary period. Employment is subject to a national and Washington State Patrol background inquiry pursuant to RCW 43.43.832. Job applicants must be able to prove authorization to work in the United States at the time of a job offer as required by the 1986 Federal Immigration Reform and Control Act. Documentation establishing authorization to work may include a Social Security Card, picture ID and/or other approved documentation.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: Standing, kneeling, and walking for extended periods of time. Bending at the waist. Pushing and pulling maintenance supplies and equipment. Lifting and moving furniture and objects weighing up to 75 pounds. Climbing ladders. Reaching overhead, above the shoulders and horizontally. Climbing ladders, stairs, scaffolding, and ramps. Dexterity of hands and fingers to operate hand and power tools and equipment. Hearing and speaking to exchange information. Heavy physical labor.

ENVIRONMENT/HAZARDS: Indoor and outdoor environment. Driving a vehicle to conduct work. Regular exposure to fumes, dust and odors. Seasonal heat and cold or adverse weather conditions. Noise from equipment operation. Working at heights on ladders or scaffolding. Working with and around machinery having moving parts. Exposure to fertilizer fumes, pollen and dust. Fumes from vehicle and equipment operation. Chemical fumes.

APPLICATION PROCESS: Applicants must submit an official Metropolitan Park District application form, along with a completed supplemental questionnaire. Failure to complete and submit the questionnaire with your application may result in your application being rejected. Resumes received without the required application form will not be accepted. Applications can be obtained at the Metro Parks Tacoma Administration building located at 4702 S. 19th St., Tacoma, WA 98405 or by visiting the Metro Parks Tacoma web site at www.metroparkstacoma.org.