Displays Curator

SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium

SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium. Where your career goes swimmingly!

It’s an exciting time at SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, as we are looking to recruit a Displays Curator to lead the Curatorial Team at one of Merlin’s most exciting, diverse, innovative and challenging attractions as well as supporting the broader ANZ animal attractions to deliver the highest standards of conservation, welfare and engagement.

With over 50 displays ranging from our state of the art Antarctic Penguin display, our 1.7m litre Great Barrier Reef tank, our 1.2m litre temperate shark display, one of only two dugongs in human care globally and a huge family of diverse native and tropical creatures, the Displays Curator role, as head of all of this and more, is quite simply the role of a lifetime!

We are looking for someone with the right balance of animal and people skills as gained through industry experience, as well as a champion of development and engagement with a proven history of incredible achievements within our field.

Interested? You should be. Read more below!

About The Role

The Displays Curator at SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium is a fundamental part of the attraction’s senior team and assumes leadership for our incredible and talented bunch of aquarists and keepers across a variety of marine and terrestrial exhibits. In addition to this, as the Curator of SEA LIFE’s largest aquarium in ANZ, the role will have a dotted reporting line into Merlin’s Conservation, Welfare and Engagement Director, and will take responsibility for supporting and delivering excellence across 5 zoos and aquariums!

At the crux of this role is the ability to provide strategic oversight to the welfare and husbandry of the thousands of amazing creatures that call SEA LIFE Aquariums home, as well as leading our product, technical and curatorial people strategies to continue to drive the aquarium to meet and exceed our ambitious goals.


  • Works as an integral part of the SLSA Senior Leadership Team to deliver attraction vision, business and capital plans through providing world-class displays.
  • Engages in all decisions relating to product, people, H&S, finance, marketing and future planning.
    Is a role model and ultimately accountable for the training, development and support of Curatorial and Dive team members.
  • Inspires teams to innovate and create, maximising guest engagement with creatures and creation of unparalleled displays. Responsible for implementation and delivery of annual Displays Development Plan.
  • Delivers consistently high standards of animal husbandry and welfare through the management, organisation and challenge of existing group and local protocols.
  • Cultivates a guest-obsessed team who focus on experience as a fundamental requirement of their roles as measured by Mystery Visit, external and internal reviews and key performance indicators.
  • Ensures correct animal acquisition/breeding/disposition strategies are followed in line with group and local guidance.
  • Is responsible for the ongoing effective management of health, safety and security matters pertaining to team, guests and animals, ensuring reporting procedures are adhered to and that safety issues are resolved in an appropriate and timely manner.
  • Provides strategic oversight over ongoing infrastructure capital plans across life support systems, plant and equipment relevant to Curatorial department.
  • Drives and supports rescue, conservation and research initiatives that support team and guest engagement, institution credibility and good-news PR and communications.
  • Works closely with Marketing Manager to align campaigns, PR, product and initiatives to deliver visitation and revenue targets.
  • Accountable for setting and management of annual displays budget, ensuring OPEX is closely and entrepreneurially monitored and managed to deliver bottom line financial results.
  • Leads and manages all curatorial projects from small tweaks to large-scale capital developments.


About You

  • Previous experience in managing animal collections at a senior level is essential, and ideally you would already have strong knowledge based on experience within the zoo/aquarium industry.
  • You’ll LOVE animals, clearly, but you’ll also love people – note this is a key leadership role and involves leadership and management of both direct teams and stakeholders, both internally and externally!
  • You’ll not be a fan of the status quo. SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium is all about being creative, pioneering and innovative, and we want someone who can bring this in spades.
  • You’ll be well known and respected in our industry, or at least have the capacity to be so. You’ll enjoy meeting new people, collaborating on ideas, presenting achievements and being a highly influential figure for zoos and aquaria worldwide.
  • Your knowledge of large life support systems is critical, as well as your ability to problem solve and plan for the future.
  • You’ll know your way around a spreadsheet, and have proven ability to manage large operational expenditure budgets.
  • You’ll be commercially astute and have a solid understanding of how curatorial roles fit into and influence the wider goals and objectives of the business.


About the Benefits

The salary is competitive and other perks include:

  • Corporate benefits including free access to all our attractions worldwide
  • Birthday leave and 3 volunteer days to give back to a social cause you care about
  • Autonomy to introduce disruptive thinking in your profession
  • Global opportunities to develop and progress your skills and career
  • Being part of a business built on fun

Merlin Entertainments is the company behind iconic brands like SEA LIFE, Madame Tussauds, LEGOLAND, and Peppa Pig World of Play. We operate in over 130 attractions across 25 countries, delivering memorable experiences to 54 million+ visitors a year.

All applications must be submitted before 1 July 2020.

To our recruitment partners, we will not be accepting agency resumes at this time. Should we require your assistance at a later date, we will reach out to you.

TO APPLY VISIT: https://merlin.csod.com/ux/ats/careersite/4/home/requisition/5679?c=merlin