Conservation Science Team Member

Walker Basin Conservancy

Yerington, Nevada

Job Type AmeriCorps
Salary Details Living allowance and education award
Required Experience 0 - 1 years
Members preparing to plant native plants

900-hour (6-month) term from April 14 to October 19, 2023

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). 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.

From creating Nevada’s newest State Park (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 operates a nursery that produced more than 25,000 native plants in 2021 and produces native seed for conservation purposes on its properties. 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. The Conservancy has an inclusive, positive culture that values work-life balance and growth opportunities. Our generous benefits package further separates us from other non-profits and local employers.


The Conservation Science Team Members will serve alongside other AmeriCorps Members and WBC field staff conducting primarily ecological monitoring and wildlife surveys 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.


  • 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 basic QA/QC.
  • Communicating effectively and professionally with other members, WBC staff, agency partners, and the public.


  • Assisting with the inventory, maintenance, and repair of WBC tools and equipment
  • 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.
  • Willingness and ability to:
    • 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.
    • Bend and crouch for long periods of time and occasionally lift heavy loads or equipment.
    • 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).


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)


Members will receive a variety of technical and professional training related to their service activities as well as personal and professional development. Available trainings include:

  • 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.


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, (5am-3:30pm in the summer months) 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.


  • Living allowance of $400/week for a total of $10,800 for the 6-month term.
  • Education award of $3,247.50 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.
  • Mental health and wellness benefits through our free Member and Employee Assistance Programs (MAP & EAP) and through our employer paid insurance plans.
  • Uniform reimbursement.
  • Holiday, personal, and sick leave.
  • Opportunities for extension or promotion upon good service.
  • Opportunities for advancement within the organization.


WBC has some optional housing accommodations that it makes available to members depending on seasonal availability and capacity. Housing is generally dorm or bunkhouse style, usually with shared bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen, and common spaces. Members living in housing are required to sign a lease and pay monthly rent of $150 for a shared room or $250 for a single room (dependent on availability). Use of WBC housing is entirely optional, members may choose to find their own accommodations in the local area. Applicants interested in living in WBC housing must be fully vaccinated.


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

Local applicants are STRONGLY encouraged to apply.

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

To Apply, please send cover letter, resume, and acknowledgement form to:

Miguel Gonzales


Subject Line: Conservation Science Team Member

Please call or email Miguel Gonzales, AmeriCorps Program Manager, at (775) 463-9887 ext. 110 or Miguel.Gonzales@WalkerBasin.org with questions.

Walker Basin Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer. Persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.  The above functions may be completed with or without reasonable accommodations.  This program prohibits discrimination based on race, religion, creed, color, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, political affiliation or disability.

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, Land Trust, Wildlife
Tags Conservation Corps