Lead Ecological Techniain

Ottawa Conservation District Grand Haven, Michigan
Deadline Mar 01, 2019
Job Type Seasonal / temporary

The Ottawa Conservation District is seeking a Lead Ecological Technician. This position will carry out work for the West Michigan Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (WMCISMA) funded by the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program.   

Location: Based in Grand Haven out of the Ottawa Conservation District office. Assignments performed throughout the WMCISMA counties, including Allegan, Kent, Montcalm, Muskegon, Newaygo, Oceana, and Ottawa.

Position Details: This is a grant funded, limited term, and non-benefitted position. Anticipated time commitment is 40 hours per week, but hours can vary due to work load and weather conditions.

Start Date: April 2019

End Date: October 2019

Compensation: $14/hour

Closing Date: March 1, 2019  

Position Description: 

The WMCISMA is hiring a Lead Ecological Technician to work out of the Ottawa Conservation District. The successful candidate will be responsible for leading the Ecological Technicians to conduct field-based surveys, mapping, and treatment of invasive plant species throughout West Michigan counties. The position will be based out of the Ottawa Conservation District office, but daily travel to site locations will be required.

Under the direction and supervision of the Program Coordinator, the Lead Ecological Technician will assist in creating daily work plans to accomplish survey and treatment goals and strategize survey and treatment plans to ensure grant deliverables are met. This person will help to supervise the work of the four-person field crew, participate in invasive species surveys and treatments, and ensure that the quality of work is up to expected standards. Treatments include manual plant removal and herbicide applications. Individuals applying for this position are required to possess their Michigan Commercial Pesticide Applicator Certification in Categories 5 and 6; additional Categories in 2 and 3B are desirable. Experience with plant identification and chemical treatment is also required.  

This individual will work with landowners and other partners to discuss projects and secure permission for surveys and treatments. Data will be collected using handheld GPS units and information will be recorded on data sheets. The Lead Ecological Technician will frequently use online and printed parcel and aerial maps. Additional duties include maintaining accurate and detailed records, maintaining equipment, and reporting on data. 

We are seeking a self-directed, responsible, and highly motivated individual who has the ability to work independently with minimal supervision. Individuals with the ability to communicate effectively with co-workers and the public in a professional manner, strong organizational and computer skills, and a background or interest in natural resource management or a related field are preferred.

While working in the field, the Lead Ecological Technician will be working in inclement weather such as rain and extreme heat while doing physical work such as hiking for extended periods on uneven terrain while carrying a 40 pound backpack sprayer or kayaking turbulent waters. This position also requires the employee to have sufficient strength to lift supplies weighing up to 50 pounds with little to no mechanical or other assistance. Regular use of herbicides is to be expected.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree, preferred but not required, in natural resource management, ornamental horticulture or related field; and/or at least 1 year of experience in landscape management, nursery work, invasive species control, or land management
  • Experience developing and coordinating work plans and providing leadership for a team
  • Ability to recognize and properly identify aquatic and terrestrial native and invasive plants
  • Knowledge of invasive plant species control techniques
  • Experience applying herbicides to control invasive species
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office suite (Word, PowerPoint, Publisher, Excel)
  • Ability to work and problem solve with little to no supervision
  • Experience with data entry and management
  • Must have valid driver’s license
  • Must possess a Michigan Commercial Pesticide Applicator Certification in Categories 5 and 6; additional Categories in 2 and 3B are desirable
  • Must be detail oriented
  • Be able to collaborate with others as well as motivate others with differing points of view
  • Experience working in various field conditions


Send cover letter, resume, and references as a single PDF to with “Lead Ecological Technician” in the subject line. Application deadline: March 16th at 5:00 PM EST.

If you have any questions, please call Jessica Crawford at (616) 842-5852 Ex.5.

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