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Freshwater Aquarist II

Loveland Living Planet Aquarium
Draper, United States Posted: September 14, 2023

As a Freshwater Aquarist II, you will work with a diverse taxa that includes fish, herps and invertebrates from South America, Asia, and here in Utah!  Included is arapaima, komodo dragons, freshwater stingrays and pikeminnows. The Level II Aquarist is responsible for providing the highest possible quality of care to the animals under their assigned care, under the guidance of the Aquariums protocols and operational procedures. This includes, but not limited to, the set-up maintenance and care of Exhibits and holding systems, preparing and dispensing diets, testing and maintaining water quality and record keeping. The individual explores and stays up to date on the Natural history, environmental parameters, and husbandry requirements of the animals under the Aquarists assigned area of responsibility. The individual assists others, and is engaged in seeking further knowledge and experience. 

  • A College degree (A.A, A.S, B.A, or B.S) is preferred with an emphasis on biology/zoology or related scientific course work. Or, Equivalent hands on professional or volunteer experience and knowledge may be considered. 
  • Two (2) or more years experience caring for animals in a public aquarium or zoological facility 
  • Possess a valid driver’s license and obtain a Utah driver’s license withing six (6) months of hire date. 
  • Open water SCUBA certification from a recognized agency required 
  • Must be able to SCUBA dive for collections, animal care, and routine maintenance of exhibits 
  • Must be compliant with all Dive team requirements within the first full quarter of hire date 
  • Stay up to date with all Dive team training and requirements 
Essential Duties and Responsibilities: 
  • Acts as a resource and mentor for Volunteers, Interns, and Level I Aquarists 
  • Train, Develop, and oversee the work of Volunteers or Interns assigned to work in the Aquarists assigned area of responsibility 
  • Mentor and train incoming Level I Aquarists, and participate in the onboarding of new hires 
  • Complete inspection rounds at least twice daily (AM and PM), assessment of inhabitant behavior and health, LSS component function, reporting any signs of disease or issue immediately to Curator, Director of Husbandry, and Veterinarian accordingly. 
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in ZIMS, Email, and direct communication 
  • Provides secondary coverage, and other coverage as assigned or needed. 
  • Familiar with basic coverage for all systems in the sub-department 
  • Performs general husbandry functions without direct supervision 
  • Maintains live exhibits and holding systems at a high level of quality 
  • Prepare and dispense diets according to LLPA standards 
  • Maintain the highest levels of cleanliness for systems, and work areas, including back of house space, at a level that is safe and hazard free, and presentable at all times 
  • Areas should be presentable for any VIP or Back of House tours 
  • Viewing windows should be clean and free of Algae, Backgrounds and décor should be presentable to guests 
  • Routine maintenance of systems as guided by LLPA SOP’s 
  • Report all non-functioning Life support equipment to the Curator/Assistant Curator and LSS Manager, or in an emergency the Director of Husbandry 
  • Ensure proper lighting levels are achieved and maintained for the animals under the Aquarists care and responsibility 
  • Maintain all daily and other records in accordance with LLPA SOP’s and protocols 
  • Demonstrate flexibility in completing tasks, which may extend after normal working hours, quick change in assignments and duties 
  • Must be able to work a flexible schedule including rotations, working Weekends and Holidays. 
  • Collaborate with coworkers and colleagues from other institutions in aquarium techniques 
  • Present lectures, demonstrations, workshops, VIP tours, public encounters, with little supervision or guidance 
  • Assist in maintaining supplies, inventories and equipment for the area or department 
  • PIC (Person in charge) over departmental area (I.e - Inventory, common area or task, etc.) 
  • Assist with and participate in animal transport, transfers and procedures 
  • Participation in approved research opportunities, such as not to detract from primary responsibilities as outlined. As approved by Director of Husbandry and/or Curator.  
  • Demonstrated ability to plumb up to 2”, under the direction and supervision of the Curator and LSS Engineer or manager 
  • Any other duties, responsibilities or tasks as assigned 
Critical Skills / Competencies: 
  • Maintain proper water quality and clarity to ensure the health of all inhabitants per LLPA standards and protocols. 
  • Ensure proper care of Life Support equipment (LSS) through regular preventative maintenance and cleaning and reporting 
  • Administer medications as needed under the direction of the Veterinarian, Director of Husbandry or Curator/Assistant Curator with some supervision. 
  • Strong identification skills, ability to identify all animals and plants under the Aquarists care.  Understands animal behavior, body condition evaluation, parameters and problem recognition in animals and LSS equipment 
  • Conflict resolution skills 
  • Dive any assigned and other systems on a schedule or as assigned for presentations, cleaning, or animal care 
  • Any other duties and tasks as assigned 
  • Adherence to all LLPA safety training, SOP’s, protocols and standards. 
Physical demands of the Job: 
  • Ability to lift and carry up to 50 lbs. 
  • Ability to swim 
  • Ability to stand for long periods of time 
  • Ability to walk up and down ladders 
  • Ability to work with various lab chemicals and cleaning chemicals 
  • Ability to work with and operate power tools or heavy machinery 
Work Environment: 
  • Hot and cold environments 
  • Outdoor and indoor environments in varying weather conditions 
  • Elevated platforms 
  • Aquatic/Aquarium habitats 
  • Uneven or unlevel work surfaces 
  • Confined work spaces 
  • Underwater environments (SCUBA) 
  • Loud, noisy work spaces 
  • Occasional sudden changes in routine, especially in emergent situations 

The Living Planet Aquarium recognizes and embraces human diversity. Different perspectives and experiences matter and everyone belongs. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer committed to creating an inclusive environment for all. We do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, ancestry, creed, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, citizenship, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, veteran status, or military status. People from all diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. The Living Planet Aquarium is committed to ensuring individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application and interview process. 

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