Avian Research Associate

Great Basin Institute

Sparks, Nevada

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $21.00/hr

The Great Basin Institute, in cooperation with the Summit Lake Paiute Tribe (SLPT), is recruiting one Avian Research Associate to perform tasks associated with surveying and monitoring raptors, songbirds and waterfowl and their habitats. The associate will work with SLPT Natural Resources Department staff to collect data on migratory birds on and around Summit Lake Indian Reservation. The associate will also collect data on vegetation composition and metrics in the shrub-steppe habitat in association with migratory bird activities. The candidate will be expected to adhere to survey protocols established by SLPT Natural Resource Department and assist with other natural resource objectives as needed. 


  • Conduct point and transect surveys for songbirds periodically throughout the breeding season
  • Conduct surveys for bald eagles and monitor foraging and nesting behaviors
  • Conduct boat-based surveys for waterfowl
  • Assist with deployment of UAVs to survey and monitor waterfowl
  • Collect and manage a variety of physical and electronic data on various projects
  • Occasionally assist with sage-grouse captures, lek counts, and nest and brood monitoring 
  • Conduct vegetation surveys as needed at designated survey points across various habitats
  • Occasionally assist with other natural resource projects as needed, such as water quality monitoring, fence and station maintenance, community outreach, and fisheries monitoring. 

To Whom Position Reports: Natural Resource Director or delegate as assigned. Travel Requirements: Weekly travel to Reservation (compensated for travel time) Conditions of Employment: Shared housing with basic amenities (electric, water, heat/AC, etc.) on the Reservation is provided during scheduled fieldwork only. Employees are expected to adhere to all Summit Lake Paiute Tribe Policies when on Tribal property including during non-working hours.

Contract Timeline:

  • One position available from March 18, 2024 – June 29, 2024
  • Full time, average 40 hours per week

Summit Lake Paiute Tribe Headquarters in Sparks, Nevada and Summit Lake Indian Reservation in Humboldt County, Nevada.

Compensation and Benefits:

  • Wages: up to $21/hr with overtime at 1.5x hourly rate.
  • Medical, dental, and vision insurance premiums available at no cost.
  • Paid leave and holidays.

Job Qualifications:


  • Successful completion of 2 years of college-level coursework in natural resources, biology, or related field; and
  • >6 months experience in natural resource projects such as wildlife research and monitoring, including >3 months experience in avian identification and monitoring.


  • Ability to identify bird species by sight and sound;
  • Good physical condition with ability to lift up to 50lbs and hike for extended periods of time over uneven terrain in inclement weather;
  • Ability to navigate in remote areas (no cell service) using compass, GPS, natural features, and maps;
  • Able to live and work as a team member in an extremely remote area of northern Nevada for extended periods of time;
  • Adhere to daily/weekly work schedules that are subject to change in response to project needs;
  • Comfortable working in both extremely cold and extremely hot temperatures;
  • Comfortable with primitive living conditions for extended periods of time;
  • Able to maintain a flexible work schedule – i.e. working on weekends and/or through the night and/or beginning the work day pre-dawn when required by project;
  • Self-motivated with a positive attitude;
  • Able to demonstrate good written and verbal communication skills;
  • Effectively interact with Tribal members, staff and agency personnel;
  • Work independently, collaboratively, and effectively in a cross-cultural environment with people of various skills;
  • Working knowledge of proper wildlife handling, tagging, and tracking techniques, proper data collection and record keeping, safe driving techniques on unmaintained dirt/ gravel roads using 4x4 trucks, UTVs and ATVs;
  • Ability to assist professional staff in conducting natural resource related studies and projects by independently collecting data, identify species of plants and animals, communicate effectively with others;
  • Passion for the outdoors and natural resource conservation and management.

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Category Ecology , Wildlife
Tags Ornithology