Refuge Support Member - Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge

American Conservation Experience

Lima, Washington

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $600/week
Required Experience 0 - 1 years

Refuge Support Member - Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge   

American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is seeking 2 Members to contribute to a variety of Refuge support duties such as visitor services and natural resource management projects alongside Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge Staff.

For more information about ACE, please visit: www.usaconservation.org.

Start Date: 05/20/2024
Estimated End Date: 10/04/2024
*a 20-week minimum commitment is required, approximately 800 hours*

Location Details/Description: Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, Lima, MT

Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge has often been called the most beautiful National Wildlife Refuge in the United States. The rugged Centennial Mountains, rising roughly 10,000 feet, provide a dramatic backdrop for this extremely remote Refuge in Southwest Montana's Centennial Valley.

The Refuge encompasses primarily high mountain and high elevation wetland habitat, the largest in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, and is located near the headwaters of the Missouri River. Numerous creeks flow into the Refuge creating Upper Red Rock Lake, the River Marsh, and Lower Red Rock Lake. The snows of winter replenish the Refuge’s lakes and wetlands that provide secluded habitat for many waterfowl, shorebirds, and wetland birds including trumpeter swans, white-faced ibis, and black-crowned night herons. The Refuge also includes wet meadows, riparian creek edges, willow fen, cool season grasslands, sage-steppe, and mountain forest habitats. This diversity provides habitat for other species such as sandhill cranes, long-billed curlews, bald and golden eagles, hawks, warblers, moose, elk, badgers, bears, wolves, mountain lions, martens, pronghorn, and native fish such as Arctic grayling and westslope cutthroat trout. 

Activities on the Refuge range from exploring, camping at one of two designated campgrounds, hunting permitted species in season in designated areas, fishing in designated areas, landscape and wildlife photography, hiking Sparrow Pond Trail or Odell Creek Trail, and bird/wildlife watching. 

For more information about Red Rocks Lake National Wildlife Refuge, please visit https://www.fws.gov/refuge/red-rock-lakes.

Position Overview: The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. This position will help FWS realize that mission at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. Members are force multipliers essential to accomplishing priority work on the Refuge. Members will receive adequate training, daily support, and assistance from FWS staff, but after orientation, members will be given responsibility and space to make their own decisions. The position at the Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge will provide a well-rounded and varied experience in the natural resource field. The member will work as part of a team to help assist the Refuge completing a variety of tasks related to habitat restoration, visitor services, wildlife inventory, invasive plant management, grazing monitoring, and more. 

This individual placement is meant to facilitate professional development and promotes exposure to land management agencies and networking with professionals. This could include gaining experience in different conservation fields and shadowing different work groups.

The member will provide support and assistance under the guidance and daily supervision of permanent FWS staff in the accomplishment of:

  • Monitoring and controlling invasive plant species
  • Monitoring grazing impacts
  • Providing public use/visitor services such as greeting and providing Refuge information for visitors 
  • Managing backcountry wildlife camera traps
  • Collecting angler data
  • Working with a wide variety of partners to accomplish a diversity of project tasks  
  • Supporting public recreation facilities and grounds upkeep, including occasional (~5%) cleaning of restrooms and offices, painting signs and picnic tables, mowing grass, removing or repairing fence, light vehicle and facility maintenance, etc. 

Schedule: Duties will primarily be carried out Monday – Friday.  Bi-weekly totals should not exceed 80 hours. A flexible work schedule may be required, which could involve work performed outside of normal work hours including on weekends and/or holidays.  Time off may be granted and requests should be directed to ACE and the FWS for approval.

Position Benefits

Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute ~40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $600/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.

AmeriCorps Education Award Program: This position may be eligible for an 675 hour AmeriCorps Education Award while serving under the EAP 2023/24 grant year program, valued up to $2,626.27 upon successful completion of a complete service term and 675 hrs. 

Loan Forbearance: AmeriCorps members may also be eligible for federal loan forbearance. Additional enrollment steps are required.  

Qualifying Child Care Coverage: AmeriCorps members may also be eligible for qualifying child care coverage. Additional enrollment steps are required.  

Public Land Corps Hiring Authority: Members serving under this agreement may be eligible for a federal hiring authority upon completion of their term of service and 640 hours of service. If the duration of a PLC-eligible term is not long enough for Members to accrue 640 hours of service (~16 weeks), the total hours served at the completion of the term may be eligible to be combined with hours accrued from another PLC-eligible term to meet the 640 hours requirement. PLC projects also include specific eligibility requirements such as age and citizenship. Please contact ACE staff with questions about eligibility, or view general information online: https://www.usaconservation.org/epic/#eligibility-requirements.

Housing: ACE members will be accommodated in provided FWS housing at no cost for the duration of the term.

Gear Reimbursement: ACE members will have up to $200 to spend on eligible gear purchases. Eligible gear for this position includes hiking boots, backpack, rain gear, work pants, jacket, etc., and must be approved by ACE staff prior to purchase. 

Provided Training/Orientation: ACE members will receive position specific training and an orientation outlining ACE policies and procedures, clear guidance on prohibited activities, and networks for support. Specific training includes grizzly bear safety, wilderness first aid, defensive driving, and ATV/UTV safety. 

Scholarship Funding Opportunity: The selected candidates for this position will be eligible to apply for ACE’s Access and Inclusion Scholarship. This is a $500 scholarship  which is intended to make participation in ACE positions more accessible to individuals who are underrepresented in the conservation field. Scholarship recipients will be able to allocate this funding to financial need(s) of their choosing. A limited number of scholarships are available. 



  • Members must be a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident, as required by U.S. government contracts
  • Willing and able to represent ACE and the partner organization in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. 
  • Ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
  • A valid driver's license and an insurable driving record (documentation to be provided upon request).
  • Willing to undergo and must pass the required three-part criminal history check. 
  • Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
  • ACE Members will need to complete bi-weekly timesheets, beginning of term feedback forms, end of term evaluations and for longer terms, a mid-term evaluation. 
  • Members may not participate in any prohibited activities as listed in the Member Service Agreement or as defined by AmeriCorps.
  • To learn more about eligibility requirements, please visit our website: https://www.usaconservation.org/epic/#eligibility-requirements.


  • Competitive applicants for this position can hold or be pursuing a natural resource related degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as environmental science, natural resource management, fish and wildlife biology, range management, botany or other related disciplines related to this position.
  • Knowledge of FWS mission, GIS or spatial applications.
  • Ability and willingness to work in grizzly bear country.
  • Deep interest in wildlife conservation.

Physical Demands, Work Environment and Working Conditions: 

  • Physical Demands: Requires frequent sitting, standing, walking, hiking, carrying, using hands to handle or feel, reaching with hands and arms, talking and hearing. Manual dexterity required for use of various tools, computer keyboard/mouse and other office equipment. Required to stoop, kneel, climb stairs, and/or crouch. Ability to hike over rough terrain, and camp overnight under field conditions.
  • Vision Requirements: Requires close, distance, peripheral and depth perception vision as well as the ability to focus. 
  • Weight Lifted or Force Exerted: Frequently moves up to 50 lbs., ability to move up to 75 pounds.
  • Environmental: Outdoor work environment conditions can change frequently; working under adverse weather conditions and in various climates. 
  • Noise Environment: Moderate to high noise such as gas-powered chainsaws and other hand and power tools. 
  • Travel: This position may require domestic travel. 

Environmental Conditions/Hazards:  The ACE member(s) may encounter environmental conditions/hazards including extreme heat or cold, rocky terrain, swamp or wetland conditions, biting insects, and potentially dangerous wildlife. The Member will be working in grizzly bear habitat. Members will receive grizzly bear safety training and wilderness first aid training. FWS will provide appropriate personal protective equipment. Minimum group size in the backcountry is 2 people. The Member may operate UTVs or ATVs. The member is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/members or resources.

Vehicle and Equipment Use/Safety: If a vehicle is required for the accomplishment of the duties, one will be provided by the FWS or ACE.  Any tools required for the accomplishment of the duties will be provided by the FWS. Use of personal protective equipment (PPE), typically provided by the FWS, will be mandatory for any activity that requires it.  Strict adherence to FWS and ACE equipment training, certification and safety protocols is required.  


To Apply: Please submit your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and experience, and contact information for three professional/academic references to the online application page for this position here: https://usaconservation.applicantpool.com/jobs/. Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position please feel free to contact ACE EPIC FWS Member Manager, Saige Ruleau at sruleau@usaconservation.org

EEO: Employment with ACE is based upon ability, qualifications, attitude, and job-related factors. Every qualified employee or applicant has the same opportunity for recruitment, hire, training, transfer, promotion, compensation, demotion, termination, benefits, employee activities, and general treatment without regard to race, color, religion, creed, sex, gender, national origin, pregnancy, ancestry, citizenship status, genetic information (including of a family member), veteran or military status, age, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, medical condition, marital or parental status, political affiliation, ethnicity, hair texture or style, arrest record, caste, hereditary status, endogamy, or any other classification protected by applicable local, state, or federal law.

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

Category General / Stewardship , Outdoor Recreation , Wildlife
Tags Conservation Corps