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Assistant Animal Trainer

Posted: January 25, 2024 Expired: November 27, 2023
The National Aquarium
3 Month

The National Aquarium

Through education, research, conservation action and advocacy, the National Aquarium is pursuing a vision to change the way humanity cares for our ocean planet.

Assistant Animal Trainer

Responsible for providing husbandry, training, and presentation support to the Animal Programs/Behavioral Husbandry staff. Responsible for assisting in the day-to-day care and training of program and exhibit animals. Responsible for learning and applying operant conditioning techniques to train and maintain behaviors. Responsible for preparing daily animal diets as instructed. Responsible for maintaining and entering daily records into Tracks software program. Responsible for coaching and directing volunteers and interns to ensure daily tasks are completed. Responsible for training and mentoring education staff on animal handling for presentations. Responsible for the cleanliness and safety of all animal and back-up areas. May participate or act as backup in public presentations.

Essential Functions:

  • Assists with the daily husbandry of animal collections.
    • Prepares animal diets and dispenses vitamins/medications.
    • Assists with feeding animals.
    • Assists with daily animal observations.
    • Maintains animal and related records.
    • Assists with the safe restraint of animals for husbandry procedures.
    • Participates in the animal enrichment program.
  • Assists with training animal behaviors within a team environment.
    • Responsible for maintaining behaviors.
    • Responsible for training basic behaviors.
    • Assists with training advanced behaviors under supervision.
    • Responsible for observing behavior training within a learning capacity.
    • Enters training plans and session records as instructed.
  • Assists in daily maintenance.
    • Responsible for the cleanliness and safety of all animal areas, back-up spaces, and equipment.
    • Adheres to all organizational and departmental policies and procedures.
  • Assists staff in training new volunteers, interns, and education animal handlers.
    • Acts as mentor to train volunteers, interns, and staff in animal husbandry, behavior, handling, and interpretation.
    • Responsible for ensuring handler training information is up to date and accessible.
  • Represents the Aquarium and the team.
    • May participate in back-up and primary roles for formal and informal public presentations.
    • Participates in research projects.
    • Completes assigned projects in a timely manner.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Experience Required

Bachelor's degree in biology, zoology, psychology or a related science is preferred. Minimum 3 months experience working with animals in an aquarium/zoo setting. Animal training and/or animal presentation experience preferred. Must have basic understanding of operant conditioning principles, goals of environmental/ behavioral enrichment, and natural history of various animal species, and be able to apply these concepts to an aquarium setting. Interested in and able to learn about basic animal husbandry, environmental enrichment, and animal training techniques. Able to observe for any signs of illness or injury, monitor eating patterns, or any changes in behavior. Proficient public speaker and able to communicate effectively with guests and staff. Familiarity with computers is necessary, especially Microsoft Excel and Word. Familiarity with Tracks software program is preferred. Adept at following established safety procedures and assigned tasks. Able to work well under direction and has the capacity to absorb feedback from peers and/or manager. Has capacity to seek consultation from coworkers and/ or manager. Able to meet developmental goals. Able to participate in facility maintenance, cleaning projects, and pest management. Able to remain stimulated by doing routine tasks. Highly detailed oriented and adept at problem solving. Able to work in a teamwork environment and meet assigned goals on time. Must interact with other staff members in a professional manner with an emphasis on teamwork.


Medical, Dental, Vision, 401(K) match and More!

How to Apply

Interested and engaged applicants should apply through our website Requests for reasonable accommodation can be made by e-mailing

The National Aquarium
501 E. Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
Phone: 4106594281

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