Conservation Science Team Member

Walker Basin Conservancy

Yerington, Nevada

Job Type AmeriCorps
Salary Details Living allowance of $550/week for a total of $14,850 for a 6-month term. • Education award of $3,447.50 for the 6-month term.
Required Experience 0 - 1 years
members monitoring butterfly activity


  • AmeriCorps 900-hour (6-month) term from April 15 to October 17, 2024


REPORTS TO: AmeriCorps and Recreation Programs Director and Conservation Science Field Manager



Make A Difference

We value people who:

  • Are motivated to make lasting changes.
  • Elevate their teams.
  • Relentlessly improve processes and our organization.
  • Are eager to take on new challenges.

Ensure Excellence

We value people who:

  • Set the example for what’s possible in conservation.
  • Go above and beyond.
  • Hold themselves to a higher standard.
  • Drive high quality outcomes.

Own It

We value people who:

  • Find solutions, not excuses.
  • Solve challenges others won’t.
  • Achieve comprehensive solutions.
  • Want responsibility and demand accountability.
  • Demonstrate ethics when no one is looking.

To apply, send a resume and cover letter to: ACRecruitment@walkerbasin.org, Subject Conservation Science Team Member


The Walker Basin Conservancy (Conservancy) leads the effort to restore and maintain Walker Lake while protecting agricultural, environmental, and recreational interests in the Walker Basin (www.walkerbasin.org). From creating Nevada’s newest State Park, the Walker River State Recreation Area, to adding thousands of acres to Wildlife Management Areas, our work impacts thousands of community members, ranchers and recreationists every year. The Conservancy acquires water rights and ranches to increase freshwater flows to Walker Lake. We re-establish native plant communities on former agricultural fields, increase public access and recreation opportunities, and develop practical solutions to save Walker Lake. Our native plant nursery produces more than 25,000 native plants and hundreds of pounds of native seed for conservation purposes each year.

The Conservancy has an inclusive, positive culture that values work-life balance and growth opportunities. Our team comprises approximately 30 full-time employees and between 15 and 40 AmeriCorps Members given the season. We invite you to join us in our ambitious mission to restore Walker Lake.


As a Conservation Science Team Member, you will primarily serve on a team alongside other WBC AmeriCorps Members supervised by a Conservation Science Crew Leader or other Conservation Science Staff, conducting primarily ecological monitoring, wildlife surveys, and Assessment Inventory and Monitoring (AIM) surveys on Conservancy project sites and public lands within the Walker River Basin. Members may also work on native seed collection, native plant propagation, recreational trail construction, fence construction, invasive species removal, and native plant re-vegetation. Members will work in conjunction with other WBC field staff, providing on the ground support to larger project operations. The Conservation Science Team Members should also have a sincere interest in expanding their knowledge of Great Basin Desert ecology, restoration practices, the flora and fauna of Nevada, and agricultural methods. Team members should also be comfortable conducting repetitive tasks while working 10 hour days outside in the desert.


  • Living allowance of $550/week for a total of $14,850 for a 6-month term.
  • Education award of $3,447.50 for the 6-month term.
  • Employer paid Health, Vision, and Dental Insurance.
  • Employer paid Member Assistance Program for mental health and personal counseling services.
  • Childcare assistance and federal student loan forbearance is available for eligible members.
  • Uniforms provided, plus $100 reimbursement for work pants and boots.
  • Holiday, personal, and sick leave.
  • Optional WBC housing accommodations are available for rent. Housing is dorm or bunkhouse style, usually with shared bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen, and common spaces. The houses are old ranch houses that have been converted for bunkhouse use and are located outside of town on old agriculture lands WBC is restoring. Members living in housing are required to sign a lease and pay monthly rent (utilities included) of $400. Use of WBC housing is entirely optional, and members may choose to find their own accommodations.
  • WBC provided transportation for work and basic necessities for members living in WBC housing.
  • WBC provided shuttle service to Yerington and housing for members arriving to Reno via public transportation.
  • Relocation assistance may be available for members facing financial hardship.
  • Member training: Members receive a variety of technical and professional training related to their service activities as well as personal and professional development, including:
    • First aid and CPR.
    • Native plant identification and revegetation.
    • Invasive species identification and treatment.
    • Irrigation system installation and maintenance.
    • Resume building, USA Jobs, and government application workshop.
    • Guest speakers on environmental, natural resource, and professional development topics.
    • Shadowing and advanced technical training opportunities such as heavy equipment operation, wildlife monitoring, and restoration planning.
  • Opportunities for extension or promotion upon good service and
  • Opportunities for advancement within the organization.


The Conservancy Field Office is located Yerington, Nevada, a rural farming community located approximately 95 miles south of Reno, NV and situated centrally in the Walker Basin at the foothills of the eastern Sierra Nevada mountains. Yerington is small but growing with about 3,100 residents. Established in 1907, the city has heritage and deep roots in agriculture, mining, railroads, and gaming. Some of the nearby attractions, activities and recreational opportunities include:

  • Camping, biking, hiking, backpacking, and paddling
  • Fishing, hunting, boating and OHV trails
  • Flat and white-water boating (1 hour away)
  • Rock hounding and climbing
  • Ghost Town Exploration
  • Ski Resorts (1.5-2 hours away)
  • Walker Lake (45 minutes away)
  • Lake Tahoe (1.5 hours away)
  • Yosemite National Park (via Tioga pass, 2.5 hours away)

Interested in getting a perspective from a current AmeriCorps member? Send question about daily life, area activities, and member experience to askamember@walkerbasin.org to hear from current team members.


Under the guidance of a WBC Crew Leader or staff member:

  • Conduct vegetation, wildlife, and stream monitoring activities including, but not limited to, terrestrial Assessment, Inventory and Monitoring (AIM), butterfly richness surveys, lotic Assessment, Inventory and Monitoring (AIM), macroinvertebrate sampling, and Integrated Monarch Monitoring Protocols (IMMP).
  • Perform data collection and management, including ensuring proper data collection in the field, timely data entry and organization, and fundamental data quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC).
  • Communicate effectively and professionally with other members, WBC staff, agency partners, and the public.


  • Assisting with the management and supervision of community volunteers on WBC conservation projects.
  • Assisting with the inventory, maintenance, and repair of WBC tools and equipment.
  • Conducting plant survival monitoring.
  • Entering and uploading field data into databases and compiling information to inform future management plans.
  • Under the guidance of WBC Staff:
    • Utilizing hand and power tools to conduct native plant re-vegetation and restoration.
    • Utilizing hand tools and backpack sprayers to conduct invasive plant removal and control.
    • Utilizing hand and power tools to conduct road decommissioning, recreation trail construction, and sign/fence installation.
    • Installing, maintaining, and operating a variety of irrigation systems for re-vegetation purposes.
    • Identify and harvest native plant seeds for use in native plant propagation and re-vegetation.


  • Experience, knowledge, and skills related to natural resources sampling and data collection is highly desirable, but not required.
  • Knowledge of desert plant/wildlife identification and ecology is highly desirable, but not required.
  • Have a sincere interest in expanding their knowledge of Great Basin Desert ecology, restoration practices, the flora and fauna of Nevada, and agricultural methods and equipment.
  • Ability to keep organized and detailed data records.
  • Ability to work effectively as part of a team, and individually when necessary.
  • Willingness and ability to safely:
    • Work outside in unpredictable weather conditions, including extreme temperatures, independently or as part of a team.
    • Work irregular hours, such as starting early or working more days with shorter hours, in accordance with project specific requirements and conditions.
    • Hike up to several miles per day across uneven terrain.
    • Bend and crouch for long periods of time and occasionally lift heavy loads or equipment.
    • Perform repetitive tasks with high accuracy and precision.
    • Use hand and power tools, operate motor vehicles, and work long days on labor intensive projects.
    • Use chemical herbicides in the treatment and control of invasive weeds while following strict application protocols.
  • Effective written and oral communication skills.
  • Meet AmeriCorps Eligibility Requirements, including:
    • Be at least 17 years of age at the commencement of service.
    • Have a high school diploma or its equivalent.
    • Be a citizen, national, or lawful permanent resident alien of the United States.
    • Pass a National Sex Offender Public Website check and National Service Criminal History Check
    • Be eligible to receive and AmeriCorps Education award, with a limit of four total terms in a lifetime and the equivalent of two full-time terms (3400 hours).


Strength, dexterity, coordination, and vision to use tools and equipment for prolonged periods. Strength and stamina to bend, stoop, sit, and stand for long periods of time. Strength and dexterity to operate small, medium, and heavy equipment. Strength and stamina to endure standing and working for long periods of time and in extreme weather conditions. Dexterity and vision to observe oncoming traffic hazards and react quickly to emergency situations. Some heavy lifting (over 75 pounds) is occasionally required.

In compliance with applicable disability laws, reasonable accommodations may be provided to qualified individuals with a disability who require and request such accommodations.  Applicants and incumbents are encouraged to discuss potential accommodations with the employer.


Members work in an outdoor setting with varying weather conditions, including, but not limited to, extreme heat, dry conditions, rain, snow or hail, and extreme cold. Members generally work (4) 10-hours days, Monday-Thursday 6am-4:30pm, with a 30-minute lunch and a 15-minute break in the morning and afternoon. Members may sometimes be required to camp in the field for the duration of the tour. Camping and worksites will generally be in areas with at least primitive road access for crew vehicles, but the spike camping sites will usually be at undeveloped backcountry sites. Both camp and project sites will generally not have access to potable water, restroom facilities, or cellphone signals, and members will be expected to follow Leave No Trace principals in camp and on project. Project work will frequently require hiking over rough terrain while carrying tools and equipment.

Position may occasionally be required to work around heavy machinery in hazardous environments. Environment is generally dirty, with prolonged exposure to conditions such as dust, fumes, noise, or odors. Frequent interruptions to planned work activities occur.


To apply, please send a resume and statement of interest/cover letter to:

Miguel Gonzales, ACRecruitment@walkerbasin.org, Subject: Subject Conservation Science Team Member

All applicants must also submit an Employment Application Acknowledgement form that can be found on our website at: https://www.walkerbasin.org/careers

Positions will remain open until filled. Only top candidates will be contacted.

Local applicants are STRONGLY encouraged to apply.

Interested in getting a perspective from a current AmeriCorps member? Send question about daily life, area activities, and member experience at the Conservancy to askamember@walkerbasin.org and you will be connected with a current member to answer your questions based on their experience.

Please call or email Miguel Gonzales, AmeriCorps Program Manager, at (775) 463-9887 ext. 110 or Miguel.Gonzales@WalkerBasin.org with questions related to the position details, administration, or hiring process.

Equal Opportunity Statement – Walker Basin Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer. WBC does not discriminate against any employee, applicant, director, officer, contractor, or any other person with whom it deals because of race, creed, color, disability, age, sex, veteran status, religion or political affiliation. WBC complies with all federal and local statutes prohibiting discrimination in employment.

Reasonable accommodations may be provided for qualified individuals with a disability.

Disclaimer - The statements contained herein are intended to describe the general nature and level of work to be performed by the employees in these positions. The statements are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of a person in each position. Other responsibilities, duties, and skills may be assigned and management retains the right to add or change the responsibilities, duties, and skills at any time. 

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Botany, Ecology, Restoration, Wildlife
Tags Conservation Corps, Trail Maintenance