Position pays: $18/hour for up to 100 hours a month


Personal traits to include:

  • Committed to the Puget Sound Estuarium’s mission to foster learning opportunities that inspire people of all ages to connect with, protect, and enjoy the unique estuary environment of south Puget Sound
  • Ability to troubleshoot and problem solve
  • Ability to fix and repair mechanical systems
  • Ability to educate persons of varying age and backgrounds
  • Exudes a positive attitude
  • Excels at working with a wide variety of community members/volunteers

Education and professional experience desired to include:

  • Previous work maintaining saltwater aquariums
  • Previous work plumbing complex, saltwater aquarium systems
  • Previous work operating and maintaining a touch tank
  • Previous work in animal husbandry

Computer skills:

  • Office Suite: Word, Excel, and Publisher
  • Google Drive/Calendar

Applicant must be available for on-call emergency situations. Applicant will be subject to a background check before hire.


The Lead Aquarist will:

  • Test water quality on a regular basis; ensure appropriate water quality standards are met
  • Feed animals once a week; work with volunteers to ensure feeding schedule is suitable
  • Monitor and maintain feeding and tank maintenance tracking sheets
  • Ensure system infrastructure and performance of tanks, including up to date filtration and equipment
  • Perform water changes at least twice a month
  • Replace/exchange medias and filter systems as required
  • Clean skimmers, pumps, filter socks, chiller prefilters, circulation pump, overflow box, algae from surfaces, glass, and other equipment
  • Maintain aesthetics of tanks for display to public
  • Inventory food supplies, restock as necessary
  • Vacuum gravel and sand
  • Maintain animal safety
  • Maintain an organized and clean working environment
  • Use problem solving skills to troubleshoot unforeseen tank issues
  • Respond to emergency situations that may require immediate water changes
  • Complete and submit WA Department of Fish and Wildlife Collections Permit
  • Collect live animals from locations included in our current collections permit as needed to maintain biodiversity of animal ambassadors in our tanks
  • Train and supervise volunteers to clean tanks and feed animals
  • Work with staff as necessary to address animal safety throughout our educational programs
  • Accompany staff and volunteers to set up, monitor and return touch tank and animals to the Estuarium during outreach events where the touch tank will be used
  • Communicate with Executive Director about tanks, upgrades, and equipment needs

Responsibilities may shift according to funding availability. Ongoing compensation is dependent on the receipt of grants and other funding. Position pays: $18/hour for up to 100 hours a month. Additional hours are available in the event of an emergency as approved by the Executive Director. This is a staff position, and the Lead Aquarist reports to the Executive Director.

Applications are due no later than July 17th, 2023. Please email paris@pugetsoundestuarium.org your cover letter, resume, and any other relevant application materials. Applicant will start no later than August 1st.

For more information: https://pugetsoundestuarium.org/support/careers/