Invertebrate Zoology Collections Technician

Oct 16 2020
Bishop Museum |Honolulu|Temporary
Job Description

Job Purpose

Assists with the maintenance and preservation of a natural history collection.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Processes specimens for preservation and storage using appropriate methods and techniques to provide for their optimum use in study or display. 
  • Assists with the updating and maintenance of various types of collection databases (specimen, geographic, bibliographic, etc.) including managing digital image and sound files to ensure preservation of all forms of information. 
  • Conducts regular IPM monitoring and intervention for pests, temperature, humidity, light and dirt.  Uses and calibrates monitoring supplies and equipment. 
  • Conducts routine curatorial tasks including  
  • 1. monitoring level, ph and specific gravity of fluid preservatives; 
  • 2.  freeze-sterilizing specimens and supplies;
  • 3. taking inventories; 
  • 4. maintaining order in cabinets and drawers. 
  • Coordinates with CM on specimen loan transactions, accessions, and deaccessions according to current collection management policies and procedures to ensure the creation and maintenance of appropriate records. 
  • Works with and supervises volunteers, as necessary, to ensure proper maintenance and security of the collections.
  • Interprets/identifies undetermined material, classifies and organizes into taxonomic groups as appropriate (i.e., Order, Family, Subfamily, etc.) to facilitate access and retrieval of the collections.
  • Assists other staff, visiting researchers and the public requiring access to the collections, to ensure the safety and security of the collections and to fulfill public outreach goals. 
  • Works with federal and state agencies to ensure compliance with all collecting, salvaging, possessing and shipping regulations. 
  • Interacts with staff and Museum clients with tact, courtesy and unqualified respect at all times.  Stays motivated and projects a positive and professional attitude towards fellow workers and clients.  Cooperates and supports teamwork; maintains and strengthens customer relations.
  • Works in a safe manner so as not to endanger fellow staff members, volunteers and visitors. Complies with safety rules and regulations and establishes safe work practices.  Reads all safety materials received.  Promptly reports unsafe conditions and unsafe acts or accidents to appropriate individual.  Maintains assigned work area and equipment free of accident-producing conditions. 
  • Participation on field trips for the purpose of surveying, sampling, collecting, and general research activities to locations that may be remote from medical facilities and other urban infrastructure, and may involve activities such as hiking, camping, climbing, rope work (such as rappelling and use of rope bridges), transport via helicopter and other small aircraft, working from boats (ships and small craft), submersible diving, snorkeling, scuba diving and other similar activities necessary to fulfill the objectives of the associated research activities.
  • Performs other duties as assigned by the Collection Manager to accomplish the goals of the Museum. 



Tech I :  High School diploma and a desire to learn science.

Tech II:  AD/BA/BS degree (in biology, museum studies or related field preferred) OR High School diploma             AND up to 3 years experience in field, lab, or related science/museum work.

Tech III:  AD/BA/BS degree (in biology, museum studies or related field preferred) AND 5 years of             experience in field, lab, systems management, or museum studies/library sciences.


Other Requirements

Flexibility in working hours, as some evening and weekend work is required.

Must have own car with proof of insurance.

Professional business like appearance

Good Attendance

Detail oriented


Direct Reports



Working Conditions

Laboratory work environment may involve exposure to fumes, noxious odors, and gases from the mounting and preservation media, as well as dust and mold from the specimens themselves.  Field work may involve exposure to high altitudes and wet conditions.


Physical Requirements

Primarily light work with periods of sitting, walking, reaching, lifting, carrying, pushing, pulling.  A high degree of hand-eye coordination required in using a microscope, hand tools and light power tools to mount and prepare specimens which range in size from small and delicate to very large and heavy.  Long periods of handling and manipulating specimens and storage containers.  Long periods of data entry and keyboard use.  Visual requirements include 20/20 corrected vision, depth perception, a wide field of vision and the ability to distinguish colors.  Must be able to lift at most 25 lbs.  Must be able to communicate verbally with co-workers and others, both in person and over the phone.  Must be able to read and process information, as well as communicate in writing.