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National Aquarium

Assistant Curator

The National Aquarium is looking for two Assistant Curators to support the the management of the National Aquarium’s Australia-Wild Extremes, Upland Rain Forest, Amazon River Forest, Sea Cliffs, and Hidden Life exhibits. Assists with the daily supervision of animal care staff. Responsible for assigned major exhibit(s), life support operations, and husbandry projects within the section.  Maintains exhibits to established National Aquarium standards.


  • Assists with the daily management of the National Aquarium’s living collection. Participates in, coordinates, schedules, and supervises daily animal care tasks, including diet preparation and feeding, maintenance of back-up areas, safe and proper animal containment and handling, and record-keeping.

  • Ensures compliance with all established Aquarium safety procedures and protocols, including fall protection and dive safety.

  • Monitors environmental parameters (temperature, water quality, humidity, etc.) of assigned areas. Monitors and responds to remote paging system during and after work hours to ensure proper exhibit and life support system operations. Responds to animal and exhibit emergencies.

  • Responsible for maintaining assigned exhibits in a manner that meets or exceeds AZA standards. Maintains exhibit aesthetics to all established National Aquarium standards. Ensures all backup and shared spaces are kept clean, safe, and organized

  • Develops an effective and productive working relationship with the Animal Health Department. Through strong observation skills, identifies animal health problems and effectively communicates and networks with the Animal Health staff for resolution.  Attends Animal Health rounds for assigned areas.

  • In the absence of the Curator, supervises the husbandry staff and serves as the temporary exhibit manager

  • Reports to work during weather and other emergencies to coordinate and participate in collection care and building safety.

  • Works closely and effectively with Facilities and Life Support Staff to troubleshoot and resolve exhibit related mechanical issues.

  • Responsible for maintaining all assigned equipment in good working order. Establishes effective and professional relationships with outside vendors.

  • Assists the Curator in budget management and payment processing, ordering supplies, and supervising contractors.

  • Able to learn daily use of our animal information software, TRACKS and advance its use and development.

  • Assists in training staff and volunteers in professional animal care standards and the proper use and maintenance of assigned equipment. Assists in encouraging and mentoring staff in individual or collaborative husbandry and research projects.  

  • Effectively networks with Guest Engagement and Visitor Service to ensure an excellent visitor experience

  • Provides concise and professional exhibit and animal updates to various aquarium communications networks

  • Must work some weekends and holidays

  • Adheres to all organizational and departmental policies and procedures

  • Other duties as assigned or required. 


  • Bachelor of Science degree in biological or aquatic sciences or related field, or an equivalent amount of work related experience.. A minimum of five years’ progressive experience as an animal care specialist at a public aquarium or zoo with at least two years of supervisory responsibilities.

  • Extensive experience in the care and maintenance of a wide variety of terrestrial and aquatic organisms.

  • Extensive experience and proficiency in the capture, handling, transfer, and transportation of terrestrial and aquatic organisms

  • In-depth expertise in a specialized discipline of zoo/aquarium science

  • Must be highly knowledgeable of organismal biology and husbandry and life support technology as they apply to a zoo/ aquarium setting.

  • Must have an affinity for maintaining animals in a zoo/aquarium setting and a strong professional, educational, and conservation ethic.

  • Ability to observe and identify signs of illness or injury, monitor eating patterns and any changes in animal

  • Behavior

  • Must be comfortable working safely at considerable heights and possess a knowledge of fall protection safety.

  • Exemplary interpersonal skills required. Experience leading volunteers and/or staff to the successful accomplishment of major tasks or objectives. Establishes effective and efficient relationships with other Aquarium departments.

  • Good oral and written communication skills and public speaking experience Ability to communicate effectively and professionally with staff, volunteers, visitors, professional colleagues and others both internal and external to the aquarium.

  • Must possess capacity to effectively share information and knowledge via a variety of mediums to others, including teaching, coaching, and mentoring. Must have the capacity to respond to and resolve a variety of supervisory related circumstances including selection, performance management and termination of direct reports. Must have capability to resolve conflict between staff members both intra-and interdepartmentally. Ability to manage staff and animals in crisis situations is essential.

  • Good oral and written communication skills and public speaking experience Ability to communicate effectively and professionally with staff, volunteers, visitors, professional colleagues and others both internal and external to the aquarium.

  • Must be adept at establishing and following safety procedures and protocols, identifying potential safety hazards, and implementing and supervising established safety program. Prioritizes a safe work environment.

  • Must have capacity to decide when to act independently and when to consult Curatorial staff.

  • Familiarity with computers is necessary; should be able to log and record records, as well as review records for accuracy and significant trends.

  • Possession of a valid driver’s license.


  • SCUBA certification or the ability to obtain certification desired

How to Apply

National Aquarium
Baltimore, MD

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