Wildlife Preservation Canada is seeking a Species-at-Risk Butterfly Technician to implement recovery activities for Taylor’s checkerspot butterfly. The primary focus of the position will be the captive management, rearing, and release of individuals to supplement and reintroduce wild populations Taylor’s Checkerspot towards achieving recovery objectives. The position is based out of the Greater Vancouver Zoo, in Aldergrove B.C. The Technician will also assist with field work, population monitoring, outreach initiatives and habitat stewardship as required and
directed; with locations including Vancouver and Denman Islands. This position offers a unique opportunity to work first-hand with a critically endangered species and gain experience in animal care and population recovery techniques in both a captive and field setting.


Under the supervision of the Lead Biologist, the technician will be responsible for the ex-situ rearing and husbandry of Taylor’s checkerspot butterflies (TCB) and will participate in releases as part of reintroduction efforts on Hornby Island. Additional field-based activities may include population surveys, monitoring and collection.

Specific duties include:

  • Daily reporting to Lead Biologist on all aspects of the conservation program
  • Daily cleaning and rearing of all TCB life stages, and maintenance of appropriate environmental conditions for each developmental stage.
  • Cultivation and harvesting of food plants
  • Pairing of butterflies and monitoring breeding behavior
  • Data collection and record keeping
  • Work with Lead Biologist and team to take an adaptive management approach to improving rearing and breeding protocols as required, with the goal of improving production of larvae and increasing breeding success; implement any new strategies efficiently and in a timely manner.
  • Direct and train co-op students in animal care and husbandry procedures.
  • Collect and preserve biological samples according to protocols.
  • Maintain high standards of maintenance and care for the animal collection.
  • Additional tasks as required related to data entry, database management, data analysis, and public education
  • Participate in outreach and education events at the zoo and in Fraser Valley as directed, as well as specific community events on Denman and Hornby Islands.
  • Participate in field activities as required and directed, including population surveys, monitoring, habitat assessment and restoration, and associated data collection. Field work may include overnight travel.


  • A working knowledge of butterfly biology, breeding cycles and breeding behaviour.
  • Demonstrated experience with being detail-oriented and observant, innovative, able to think critically and come to animal care decisions based on daily changes in animal behaviour, life stage, health, and enclosure conditions.
  • Ability to work both independently and cooperatively within a team. Recognizes when clarification of correct procedures is necessary.
  • Physically fit and able to traverse rough terrain on offshore islands.
  • Personable, with good communication skills, a positive attitude, and highly selfmotivated.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong organizational, time management and analytical skills.
  • Detail-oriented and able to accurately enter, manage, and analyze data

Highly Preferred Skills and Experience:

  • Completed a relevant college or university program (e.g., biology, ecology, environmental science, wildlife biology, zoology, or other similar disciplines)
  • Experience with the captive husbandry of Lepidoptera and/or other insects would be a very strong asset and as important if not more so than having completed a college or university program.
  • Valid OFA Level 1 First Aid or equivalent is desirable.

Skills and Knowledge that will be Gained during this Position:

  • Insect husbandry
  • Science communication
  • Lab management
  • Understanding species-at-risk recovery processes
  • Problem solving
  • Data management
  • Experimental design
  • Population surveying
  • Blog writing