Work on the Center for Conservation (CFC) Coral Team to achieve The Florida Aquarium’s mission to protect and restore our blue planet. Primary responsibilities include husbandry of the CFC’s collection of Western Atlantic coral species and other marine invertebrates. Work closely with veterinary staff to provide excellent standards of animal care. Interface regularly with staff from partner organizations including the University of Florida, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and the Tampa Electric Company. Perform essential and secondary job functions in accordance with guidelines set and approved by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and other safety regulatory agencies.

Essential Position Functions

  • Maintains high standards for animal care for the living coral collection along with Animal Health staff
  • Performs husbandry duties including but not limited to cleaning aquariums, performing water changes, maintaining life support systems, preparing food, feeding animals, and adjusting water quality parameters
  • Ensures accurate and detailed daily record keeping
  • Tests water quality parameters according to established standard operating procedures and assists with maintenance of water quality laboratory
  • Identifies and resolves issues with life support systems for live coral aquaria
  • Collects data on animal health required for permit reporting and research objectives
  • Maintains coral greenhouse facilities in a clean and organized fashion
  • Assists with design and installation of ongoing CFC expansion projects such as coral archive systems, saltwater treatment and supply system, coral spawning laboratories
  • Participate in coral spawning and larval rearing activities, including night work and data collection and coral recruit care using microscopes
  • Delivers extraordinary customer service to all CFC guests
  • Assures behavior consistently meets the FLAQ values of Respect, Trust and Excellence
  • Identifies and solves obstacles with projects and tasks in a team setting
  • Perform all other duties as required

Secondary Functions

  • Initiates and executes husbandry improvements and modifications independently
  • Initiates and executes tours, media, presentations and reports independently
  • Maintains tools and equipment necessary for the care of the collection
  • Represents the aquarium at selected professional development opportunities
  • Participates in meetings with curators, biologists and other aquarium departments
  • Oversee volunteers and interns
  • All other duties as required

Education, Requirements, and Technical Skills

  • Minimum of 4.5 years of experience in husbandry of aquatic organisms, including direct responsibility for care of live coral aquaria
  • BS or higher degree in a biological science or related field
  • Strong understanding of life support systems and water quality parameters for marine invertebrates, including stony corals and the ability to recognize and troubleshoot problems
  • Knowledge of Animal Record Keeping systems (ZIMS/ISIS) preferred
  • Experience with coral cryopreservation highly desirable
  • Proficiency with Windows and Microsoft Office software (Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook)
  • SCUBA certification required with ability to advance to Open Water Scientific Diver/Rescue Diver level within 6 months of hire; AAUS scientific diving experience preferred.
  • Previous experience with coral spawning or larval propagation strongly preferred
  • Must be willing and able to obtain a valid State of Florida Driver’s License
  • Flexibility in working weekends, evenings, and holidays


  • Customer Service Orientation — Listen to and understand the customer (both internal and external) and anticipate and evaluate the customer’s needs; make the customer’s satisfaction a high priority in all areas of responsibility.
  • Teamwork — Support, facilitate, and participate in activities that promote team effectiveness; demonstrate sensitivity for the feelings and needs of team members and support team goals.
  • Coordination — Organize and move a group of individuals and/or activities toward a common goal
  • Planning and Organizing — Establish a course of action with specific long-range goals for the aquarium; set priorities among competing requirements and allocate resources in the most efficient and effective way; develop contingency plans that anticipate changes in the work environment.
  • Judgment — Decide on and commit to an action on the examination of the facts at hand; find creative solutions to situations and opportunities that arise; take strategic risks when necessary.
  • Communication (oral and written) — Effectively express ideas verbally and non-verbally and actively listen to individuals and groups; prepare and focus presentations to the characteristics and needs of the audience; express ideas clearly and concisely in written form, through memoranda, letters, reports, and other documents.
  • Information Gathering and Monitoring — Effectively collect relevant data using questioning or research techniques to monitor and manage projects and people