Senior Aquarist


Senior Aquarist

About the Organization

Heal the Bay is an environmental nonprofit dedicated to making the coastal waters and watersheds of greater L.A. safe, healthy and clean. To fulfill our mission, we use science, education, community action and advocacy. We educate the greater Los Angeles region about the undersea wonders of our local Santa Monica Bay, the causes and impacts of local water pollution, the need for an improved resilient water supply, and what Angelenos can do to make a difference. We reach over 150,000 people every year through our Heal the Bay Aquarium, beach cleanups and community outreach programs.

California’s diversity is one of its greatest strengths. Heal the Bay is committed to creating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive environment that respects all individuals regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, physical ability, religion, or age. We are focused on recruiting and retaining a diverse team of employees, fostering a positive environment where inclusive behaviors are the norm, prioritizing our work through an equity and inclusivity lens, and embedding accountability for diversity throughout the organization. We are committed to creating an environment where all employees are included, are treated with dignity and respect, and are in a position to contribute to our success.

About the Role

Heal the Bay is looking for a full-time Senior Aquarist to support our Heal the Bay Aquarium Operations Department.

Under the supervision of the Associate Director of Operations, the Senior Aquarist will fill the primary role of providing high standard husbandry care and maintenance for all aquatic exhibits, displaying local Santa Monica Bay species. As an advanced level position, the Senior Aquarist will be expected to have a strong base understanding of aquarium science and the ability to lead projects, develop volunteers, and contribute to the overall mission of Heal the Bay.

Expectations & Responsibilities

· Daily duties include but are not limited to: cleaning exhibits, food preparation and feedings, treating any injured/diseased individuals as necessary, making observations and recognizing abnormal animal behavior/appearance, acting upon/reporting such observations in a timely manner, and completing all necessary records and paperwork thoroughly

· Maintains all life support systems equipment, aquarium exhibits, and facilities. Identifies issues, performs necessary repairs, develops new systems, and keeps adequate supplies in stock

· Performs routine water quality analysis, monitors trends, and makes necessary adjustments to maintain ideal aquatic habitat conditions

· Leads and/or assists with acquiring all aquatic specimens through industry supplier purchase, zoological institution trade/donation or in boat collecting trips

· Performs veterinary/medical procedures under the guidance of the HTB contracted veterinarian

· Assists with procurement of supplies and equipment within quarterly/monthly designated budgets

· Assists in the advancement and implementation of exhibit goals by contributing to design and management

· Trains, develops, and oversees the work of aquarist volunteers and interns

· Contributes to the mission of Heal the Bay by creating exhibit displays and work that promotes science, education, community action, and advocacy

· Performs all other duties as required

Preferred Qualifications

· Bachelor’s degree in biology, fisheries, zoology or related field required OR equivalent experience.

· 3+ years of progressive levels of responsibility providing daily husbandry to aquatic animals

· Knowledge of modern principles of animal care and welfare, including behavioral enrichment, habitat, nutrition, disease, training, water quality, and transport

· Open Water SCUBA certified. Rescue Diver Certification preferred or the ability to get the certification within 4 months of hire

· Ability to lift and carry 50 pounds, kneel, bend, crouch, squat, and stand for extended periods of time

· Ability to work effectively in wet conditions indoors and out, as well as, in inclement weather

· Experience with computerized record keeping software such as Tracks is highly preferred

If you don’t meet all of the preferred skills above, you are still encouraged to apply and will be considered based on diverse and equivalent skills and experience.


This is a non-exempt full-time position $20-$24 per hour with appropriate state and federal taxes withheld.


There are dental, medical, health insurance, and vacation benefits included as part of employment. In accordance with California Labor Law, employee will be eligible to receive up to 72 hours of paid sick leave per calendar year, after completing 90 days of employment. All Heal the Bay recognized Holidays will be compensated in accordance to time worked.


Full-time, 40 hours per week. Must be available for weekends, evenings, and holidays.

How to Apply

Please submit cover letter and/or brief introduction and resume/CV or list of qualifications to Laura Rink, Associate Aquarium Director of Operations. Please put “Senior Aquarist” in the subject line.


April 1, 2021

Heal the Bay is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status and we strongly encourage applications from individuals that reflect the diversity of Los Angeles County.