Field Research Technicians

Cariveau Native Bee Lab

St. Paul, Minnesota

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $15-17/hour based on experience (UMN Work-Study students encouraged to apply)
Required Experience 0 - 1 years

The Cariveau Native Bee Lab at the University of Minnesota is looking for qualified applicants to fill multiple technician positions, May through September 2024.

Dates: Mostly late-May to early-September. 

Location: Location will be project specific. See project descriptions for exact locations and housing. Some positions are based in the Twin Cities metro while others are based in rural Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Cars for travel to field sites will be provided.

Responsibilities: Responsibilities are project dependent. Technicians will conduct field work such as: observe and collect wild bees via nets and/or pan traps, and nest searching; conduct native plant surveys; collect nectar samples; and process, pin, and label bee and plant specimens collected during the 2024 field season. Technicians will also enter and check data. This work requires attention to detail and an eagerness to learn. Both independent and group work is required. 

The work is partially sedentary and will include time spent in a stationary position. The person will also need to traverse uneven terrain while in the field and bending is often required. Heavy items (e.g., packs and equipment up to 50 pounds) must be transported on a routine basis. The majority of the work will occur in outdoor weather conditions.

Required Qualifications:

  • Valid US driver’s license and legally able to work in the US.
  • Experience with insect and plant identification, or relevant coursework.
  • Effective communication skills with supervisors and small teams.
  • Dependability, punctuality, and ability to complete high quality work during sometimes tedious tasks.
  • Ability to work outside all day, in conditions that might include heat, humidity, stinging/biting insects, and noxious plants (we are open to discussing accommodations to make this work accessible).
  • Experience entering data or equivalent tasks where attention to detail and a commitment to accuracy is required.
  • Flexibility and adaptability.
  • Commitment to safety.
  • Commitment to being a respectful team member

Preferred Qualifications (see additional preferred experience under Project descriptions below)

  • Understanding of basic bee biology with experience handling, collecting, or identifying native bees.
  • Prior experience identifying tallgrass prairie species or other botany experience.
  • Previous fieldwork experience (For projects that require extensive overnight travel, previous experience camping long term or living at a field station).

Projects Hiring 

  • Prairie Reconstruction and Adaptive Management (PRAM) Project - Multiple technicians (3-4 technicians) will conduct native bee sampling and plant surveys at field sites across Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Extensive overnight travel and camping required. A typical work week would potentially include 4 or 5 days camping (or occasionally staying at field stations/hotels/motels/airbnbs) in rural MN/ND/SD with the possibility of one day working at the bee lab in Saint Paul, MN. Travel and housing accommodations will be paid for by the project for days spent outside the Twin Cities, but not when in Saint Paul. Contact Rebecca Zerlin at rzerlin@umn.edu with questions.
  • Multi-Taxa Response Project studies how bumblebee, butterfly, grassland bird, and plant communities are impacted by the different seed mixes used in Conservation Reserve Program practices. Full-time position (3 technicians). Location: MN, SD, ND borders. Extensive overnight travel will be required and will involve extensive camping with occasional stays at field stations/hotels. Travel and housing accommodations will be paid for by the project for days spent outside the Twin Cities, but not when in Saint Paul. Contact Maya Vellicolungara at velli005@umn.edu with questions.

Please visit our website to learn more about the Cariveau Native Bee Lab. 


Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. To apply, email your resume, cover letter, and three professional references in a single PDF file to rzerlin@umn.edu. In your email, please include information regarding your availability, including preferred start/end dates, and any time off you might need during the summer and which project you are interested in applying for. 

Equity and Diversity:

The University of Minnesota provides equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

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

Category Botany , Wildlife
Tags Entomology