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Scientific Assistant

The Scientific Assistants are normally employed for 18-27 months at King Edward Point research station.

About the role

The Scientific assistant (fisheries biology) to work at the a marine and fisheries research station at King Edward Point (KEP) on the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia. The successful candidate will assist with the laboratory and field-based research programme undertaken by BAS on behalf of the Government of South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands (GSGSSI).

You will be required to undertake biological sampling of the inshore waters of South Georgia using a variety of techniques such as plankton nets and recorders. Laboratory work will include the analysis of specimens from the inshore sampling programme and the commercial fishery. The work will be focused on the commercially important Patagonian toothfish and mackerel icefish but will include research on a range of other associated species and bycatch. Feeding ecology, distribution, growth and reproductive ecology are the main research areas where you will be expected to provide data that help to underpin the sustainable management of fish resources at South Georgia.

You will be required to participate in ship-based surveys of the commercially important resource species of South Georgia and could be asked to spend time at sea on commercial fishing vessels acting as a scientific observer. The day to day management of the laboratory facilities is an important element of the post. You will help to prepare data and reports as required and produce scientific papers for publication in peer-reviewed journals where appropriate.

The marine and fisheries research laboratory at King Edward Point, South Georgia opened in March 2001 following the departure of the military garrison from the island. The station boasts well-equipped analytical and wet laboratories, a scientific library and modern computer facilities linked to the BAS headquarters in Cambridge. A high quality, accommodation block provides comfortable living conditions for the personnel on station. Over winter the station has a BAS complement of eight: – two scientists and five support staff including a doctor and a two boatmen. The station personnel also provide logistical support for the GSGSSI Marine Officers and the South Georgia Museum located at the abandoned whaling station at Grytviken.

The post is based at South Georgia and is a fixed term appointment of 27 months (with approximately 24 months continuously at South Georgia). You will work alongside the zoological field assistant at KEP and report to the science manager at BAS, Cambridge. You will also be responsible for the implementation of Health and Safety regulations on the station and in the field.


  • To assist with all aspects of the implementation of the fisheries research programme at King Edward Point, South Georgia.
  • To undertake both laboratory and field research and participate on ship-based scientific surveys.
  • To maintain live specimens within the controlled temperature facility.
  • To assist with the update of the scientific database.
  • To prepare data and reports as required and produce scientific papers for publication in peer-reviewed journals where appropriate.
  • To undertake other duties as requested by the Director of BAS.

Who can apply?

Applicants should have a good degree in marine biology, fisheries science or a related subject and have fieldwork experience of sampling techniques for marine fauna. They should also be numerate and possess computer/IT skills and have experience of data handling and analysis. Experience of marine aquarium systems would be an advantage. Previous experience of small-boat handling and working at sea is desirable. You may be required to work at sea on fishing vessels as an international scientific fisheries observer and must be a UK passport holder to fulfil this role.


You can find the full job description and skills specification for this role here: Scientific Assistant – Antarctica

Vacancies are advertised from January to March.  Check out latest vacancies.

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