Aquarium Biologist

Atoll Volunteers
June 12, 2019
Maldives, Maldives
Job Type
Closing date
4th July 2019


We are looking for a new Aquarium Biologist to run our clownfish breeding programme here at Atoll Marine Centre.

The aquarium trade is raising conservation concerns in the Maldives with thousands of fish exploited annually. This activity is depleting populations of ornamental reef fish and coral species with the associated destructive capture techniques harming both target and non-target species. Some fish and coral species are more vulnerable than others due to the market demand, such as the commonly known clownfish or anemonefish. Our goal with this project is therefore to supplement the aquarium trade with sustainably sourced fish and release a proportion of bred fish into the wild to reduce pressure on wild stocks. We also aim to spread awareness and increase knowledge and appreciation for Maldivian marine life and the threats it faces among local communities.

The Aquarium Biologist will run the technical aspects of this project, focusing on rearing and breeding anemonefish native to the Maldives and participate in awareness-raising activities. They will also assist the two resident marine biologists working on the other marine conservation projects such as turtle rehabilitation, coral gardening and various educational programmes. This position is a great opportunity to gain experience with a local NGO and participate in programmes benefiting the communities through awareness-raising and training!

We are looking for someone who has experience working in aquariums, in particular tropical aquariums. Ideally the candidate would have experience breeding clownfish and knowledge of their unique biology and reproductive cycles.


  •  Maintain aquarium, water quality, equipment & inventory of supplies
  • Assist in the breeding process (establish mating pairs, diet & condition adjustment)
  • Monitor fish behaviour and health
  • Oversee larval rearing process (diet, growth monitoring)
  • Manage algae, rotifer and artemia culture (live feed production)
  • Complete monitoring progress reports
  • Assist fellow marine biologists with tasks within the marine centre


  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field (e.g. marine biology, aquaculture, conservation biology)
  • Experience in fish husbandry (experience with clownfish breeding is preferred)
  • Physically fit and comfortable in the water. It is extremely hot and unsheltered and you will have to travel around the island by foot.
  • Experience working in a tropical and/or developing country. Conditions are basic, food is simple and island operations and supplies tend to be limited and slow under the concept of ‘island time’
  • Enthusiasm for marine conservation and developing outreach activities and material
  • Ability to effectively communicate, in writing and verbally, and relay complicated information in a user-friendly manner
  • Be self-motivated, good organizational and problem-solving skills, enthusiastic for marine conservation
  • Open Water Scuba License
  • Be available for 6 months (starting around 1st of August, 2019) with opportunity to extend

What’s in it for you?
Well, aside from the obvious perks delivered by the Maldives, namely the beautiful setting and fantastic marine life, you will be based in a wonderfully friendly community, fully supported in your work. Being based on a local island, as opposed to a resort island, you will have the very real and exciting opportunity to instigate beneficial change right where it is needed. The community is responsive and ready to be educated.

This position will also grant you the unique chance to experience life in the ‘real’ Maldives, outside the crowded and expensive tourist resorts. On our island there are over 6000 inhabitants so expect to be living in a small island community where everyone knows everyone and where you are bound to be welcomed with open arms and a sense of hospitality which is rare in this world! On the weekends we arrange weekly excursions to explore the wonders of the Maldives, whether it be to uninhabited islands or our favourite snorkeling spots.

To apply email your CV and a covering letter to Applications may close before closing date if a suitable candidate is found.
Closing date – 4th July, 2019

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