Training at the Aquarium Berlin

Training profession: Animal keeper in the specialist field of zoo keeping (IHK qualification)

Trainees at the Aquarium

The trainees of the Aquarium cover several areas of the zoo during their three-year traineeship. A large part of their training focuses on the skills required to care for invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles and fish. At the end we have a theoretical and practical zoo keeping examination with a focus on aquaristics and terraristics.


The animal-keeping apprenticeship trade requires a high-school diploma (the equivalent of the intermediate school leaving certificate in Germany) with good grades in science subjects. It is offered as basic vocational training.


Applications are submitted with the final two certificates gained at the beginning of the desired training year.
Your health status must be justified by a medical certificate. In addition, a hepatitis (hepatitis A and B) certificate and a tetanus jab is required.

A tabular resume with an application letter must also be included.
You should use your cover letter to state what you expect from working as an animal keeper and why you want to learn this trade. Special qualifications, such as experience gained in placements in this area, should also be noted or enclosed. We are happy to receive application materials in written form without file but also by email.
You must remember: We can only accept a limited number of applicants for shortlisting. The number of trainees is limited to one to two places annually.

Practical and theoretical training

The aquarium trainees get to know animal management across the various departments during the first year of training.
The second and third training years see the trainees repeatedly go through the various sections of the freshwater, seawater with invertebrates and reptile departments, the insectarium and the frog department within the Aquarium.

Parallel to the practical training, block teaching also takes place for all trainees in the Peter-Lenné-Schule (Hartmannsweilerweg 29, 14163 Berlin – Zehlendorf) across all three years of training. Foundation knowledge about the biology of the animal kingdom, feeding science, animal management, the calculation of animal enclosure areas and feeding levels is taught here with a focus on technical qualification, technical calculation and social studies, The trainee additionally gains an understanding of the key animal and nature protection legislation, internal provisions, occupational health and safety regulations.


An intermediate examination concerning the technical and practical knowledge acquired will be held after eighteen months. The results reflect the existing knowledge of the trainees well.

There is a multi-part final exam at the end of the third year, which is composed of a written examination before the Berlin Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) and the practical part.
The trainee has passed the exam once the examination certificate is handed over and with it is then considered an animal keeper. An employment position after the training is then decided upon within the framework of the final section of the traineeship.
If the trainees fail the exam, then they have the opportunity of repeating this after a period of six months. During this period, they may remain classified as a third-year trainee upon request and continue to take part in classes in the vocational school.


Please address your application or questions regarding trainieeships at Aquarium Berlin to Ms Gundula Gregarek, Zoo Berlin AG/Tierpark Berlin GmbH. Email: