Wildlife Crew Lead (Spotted Owl) Sequoia NF (USFS)

The Great Basin Institute

Springville, California

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $26/hour with overtime at 1.5x hourly rate. Full time, average 40 hours per week
Required Experience 2 - 6 years

The Great Basin Institute, in cooperation with the US Forest Service, Sequoia National Forest, is recruiting (2) Wildlife Crew Leads to support the study and review of proposed actions in portions of the Sequoia National Forest, Giant Sequoia National Monument, and Sequoia National Park. Associates will support GBI Resource Specialists in performing field surveys, collecting data, and providing technical assistance to assess wildlife habitat for various species. Field work will consider federally listed species, candidate species, and those proposed for listing while assessing the ecosystems upon which they depend. This work is in furtherance of ESA goals that seek the best available scientific information to inform forest restoration planning.

Crew Leads will assist agency personnel and crew members with applied management objectives for sensitive, threatened and endangered species. The majority of surveys will focus on CA Spotted-Owl but may include Northern Goshawk, Pacific Fisher, and Sierra Nevada Yellow-Legged Frog. Work will focus on monitoring populations and surveying habitats used by these species to 1) support population data on specific species; and 2) ensure adequate protections are in place for areas undergoing vegetation management and restoration projects. These positions support legally mandated compliance measures and obligations and  will help serve USFS vegetation management and fuels reduction efforts, supporting initiatives for healthy, productive, and resilient forest landscapes and resources. This work provides professional development and leadership opportunities including:

  • Increased exposure and responsibility enacting USFS processes, procedures, and compliance measures; 
  • Assisting in reporting and data entry/quality assurance and control;
  • Increased technical experience and expanded opportunities and exposure to additional disciplines (e.g. archaeology, forestry, hydrology, etc.).

The Wildlife Crew Lead will perform a wide variety of activities to support all stages of project work. The Lead will be responsible for crew safety and oversight, including coordination of daily tasks and affiliated project and crew needs, provide or assist in training, converse frequently with agency staff to plan and assess crew accomplishments, and converse with GBI staff as needed. Crew size will range between 2-3 people. Duties may include:

  • Surveys for CA Spotted-Owls (~70% of season);
  • Broadcast acoustical surveys for Northern Goshawks; 
  • Nesting and reproductive status monitoring;
  • Salamander surveys;
  • Frog identification;
  • Maintaining passive and baited camera stations;
  • Setting up bat survey stations;
  • Raising and breeding mice for CA Spotted-Owl surveys.

Contract Timeline:Tentatively April-October
Sequoia National Forests - Hume and Western Divide RD
Compensation and Benefits:
- Wage: $26/hour with overtime at 1.5x hourly rate. Full time, average 40 hours per week.
- Health, Dental, Vision Insurance paid 100% by GBI. Available on the first day of the month following the start of employment.
- Shared housing provided in cooperation with GBI and USFS.
- Camping Per Diem: $15/night as necessary.
- Uniform Stipend.

Job Qualifications:

At least one of the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Biology, Ecology, Natural Resource Management or related discipline, including field based coursework AND one year of wildlife related field work;
  • Three years of professional fieldwork experience.


  • Experience in conducting surveys for Spotted-Owl, minimum two seasons required;
  • Experience in conducting surveys for Northern Goshawk and other raptors, strongly preferred;
  • Experience leading crews in the field, including oversight of crew safety, communication, fidelity to methods and data quality;
  • Proficiency in navigation using GPS, topographic map and compass;
  • Experience in standard field methods for wildlife surveys, status assessments, and habitat characterization;
  • Possess a clean, valid, state-issued driver’s license;
  • Ability to work effectively in a team setting with USFS staff, GBI staff, interns, volunteers, academic, state, and federal partners;
  • Ability to work safely and productively in remote field settings under adverse conditions. This includes occasionally overnight work & camping in remote areas for consecutive nights;
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to work cooperatively as well as independently;
  • Strong communication skills with a diverse audiences, both written and oral;
  • Willingness to work a variable schedule in response to project needs, possibly including some weekends, nights, holidays;
  • Physically fit to work outdoors, carry up to 50 pounds of personal and/or field equipment, and withstand the rigors of a forested and/or high desert environment in all seasons.


  • Ability to safely operate and maintain a 4WD vehicle on and off paved roads;
  • Experience with camera trapping protocols;
  • Familiarity with and interest in resource management issues of western states and the ecology of the Sierra Nevada ecoregion;
  • Familiarity with Sierra Nevada forested habitat types, especially east slope, preferred;
  • Ability to understand, implement and adhere to established data collection, inventory, assessment, and monitoring protocols;
  • Capacity to collect and maintain field data in an organized manner that is easily understood and accessible to other resources staff;
  • Advanced skill using specialized software such as Microsoft Office Suite, ArcMap GIS, and Google Earth.

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Category Ecology , Wildlife
Tags GIS , Ornithology