The Great Basin Institute is working cooperatively with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) Hopper Mountain National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Complex based in Ventura, CA to support the California Condor Recovery Program. Monitoring Technicians will be selected to serve as AmeriCorps volunteers to assist in management of the free flying population of California Condors in southern California. These are 6-month commitments during which volunteer interns will receive a per diem of $40 per day of work while working on and around one of two wildlife refuges central to condor activity in Southern CA.
This volunteer opportunity focuses on management of the free flying population of California Condors in Southern California. Selected applicants will track this population throughout its range using radio telemetry and by ground-truthing GPS transmitter data. Volunteers will observe condor behavior at feeding sites, roosts and nests. Field work requires the ability to work independently and as a team; work and sometimes camp in remote areas during inclement weather or harsh environmental conditions; travel via UTV, 4WD vehicle, or by foot, in steep mountainous terrain; place carcasses (~50lb) at supplemental feeding sites; keep detailed field notes; follow data collection protocols for the collection and entry of accurate and consistent data; and assist in routine office work.
Timeline and Compensation:
- 6-month appointment beginning September 25, 2017, or upon availability
- $40/day field per diem
- Education Award*: $2,887.50
- USFWS housing provided during 10-day service period
- Affordable Care Act compliant health benefits provided
*AmeriCorps Education Award may be used for past, present or future education experiences, including payment of qualifying federal student loans. Loan forbearance and accrued interest payment on qualifying student loans is also available.
The Hopper Mountain NWR Complex manages four National Wildlife Refuges, and is headquartered in Ventura, California. It serves as the lead office for the California Condor Recovery Program (http://www.fws.gov/refuge/hopper_mountain/). Located in the southern Los Padres National Forest region, Hopper Mountain NWR is 70 miles northwest of Los Angeles and 70 miles east of Santa Barbara.
- Bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences (e.g., biology, ecology, wildlife management, or related field) or coursework and related experience;
- Previous experience following protocols for field sampling and data collection and related experience in data entry, collection and management;
- Understanding of issues related to threatened and endangered species, and familiarity with the ecology of the study region preferred;
- Previous experience in using radio telemetry to locate free-ranging animals preferred;
- Experience in the use of GPS units for navigation and collecting spatial data;
- Possess strong organizational skills;
- Tolerant of working in variable weather conditions, willing and able to work outdoors in adverse weather conditions, and able to hike 2-5+ miles daily on uneven terrain while carrying a pack sometimes exceeding 50 lbs.;
- Willingness and ability to camp at primitive sites for several consecutive nights;
- Ability to work productively as part of a team to accomplish mutual goals and follow safe working practices;
- Possess a valid, state-issued driver’s license and clean driving record;
- Experience safely operating 4WD vehicles and UTVs; and
Meet AmeriCorps eligibility requirements:
(1) U.S. citizenship or legal resident alien status,
(2) eligible to receive an AmeriCorps Education Award (limit of four in a lifetime or the equivalent of two full-time education awards),
(3) pass National Sex Offender Public Website (NSOPW) and federal criminal background checks,
(4) Adhere to the rules, regulations and code of conduct as specified in the Member Service Agreement; and
(5) Will not engage in any prohibited activities as listed in the Member Service Agreement.