Junior Research Specialist, Ecology

Yreka, California
$38,127.00 full time annual salary, appointment will be at 80% time
Nov 22, 2017
Jan 15, 2018
Job Level
Entry level
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type

The Department of Environmental Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) invites applications for three (3) positions of Specialist in Ecology under the direction of Christopher Wilmers and Heiko Wittmer (Victoria University of Wellington). The successful applicants will conduct fieldwork for an ongoing research project in Siskiyou County, northern California, funded by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). The study is aimed at understanding the dynamics of black-tailed and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) in two separate areas encompassing a range of environmental and management conditions. A particular focus of the project is to tease apart the effects of environmental variables including habitat quality and puma (Puma concolor) predation on deer population dynamics.

Specific duties include (but are not limited to) contributing to fieldwork on deer including: fawn captures, monitoring radio-collared deer (adults and fawns), investigating deer mortality sites, conducting vegetation surveys, conducting deer pellet surveys, working with camera traps, data management and entry, and other duties as assigned. Specialists may have the opportunity to assist with puma fieldwork including captures with hounds and trapping which may require handling bait, as well as kill site investigations. Under the directors’ supervision, the specialist will guide interns in the field. An ability to maintain excellent working relationship to local CDFW personnel aiding with the study is essential.

We are particularly interested in applicants with previous experience in ungulate ecology and/or predator-prey interactions. Given the study areas are in remote and rugged field settings, it is important that technicians can work long hours safely and independently under these conditions.

This is an excellent position for someone with a desire to conduct fieldwork involving large ungulates and carnivores. Preference will be given to highly motivated individuals who have the ability to take initiative, have an interest in doing future graduate work and a willingness to live in remote field camp for extended periods of time.

RANK: Junior Specialist

SALARY: $38,127.00 full time annual salary, appointment will be at 80% time.


  • BS/BSc degree in wildlife biology or related field
  • Experience conducting fieldwork on large mammals
  • Experience using radio telemetry to monitor and locate animals, including triangulating animal positions and locating dropped collars/mortalities
  • Experience using GPS and topographic maps to navigate and locate pre-determined transects


  • Experience using snowmobiles
  • Experience assessing mortality sites to determine predator identity or assessing mortality sites of known predators or extensive experience in mammal tracking
  • Conducting surveys in remote and rugged field conditions, including hiking and navigating using map, compass, and GPS in steep and brushy terrain
  • Experience driving 4WD trucks in muddy and snowy conditions and a valid driver license
  • Experience setting unbaited camera traps
  • California plant identification experience
  • Wilderness First Aid
  • Experience working as a collaborative member of a team


TERMS OF APPOINTMENT: The initial appointment is for one year, with the possibility of reappointment through September 2019. Should the hiring unit propose reappointment, a review to assess performance will be conducted. Reappointment is also contingent upon availability of funding.

TO APPLY: Applications are accepted via the UCSC Academic Recruit online system, and must include letter of application addressing how you meet the qualifications, curriculum vitae, university transcripts, and three confidential letters of recommendation.*Documents/materials must be submitted as PDF files.

Apply at https://recruit.ucsc.edu/apply/JPF00501

Refer to Position #JPF00501-18T in all correspondence.

*All letters will be treated as confidential per University of California policy and California state law. For any reference letter provided via a third party (i.e., dossier service, career center), direct the author to UCSC’s confidentiality statement at http://apo.ucsc.edu/confstm.htm.

CLOSING DATE: Review of applications will begin on January 15, 2018. To ensure full consideration, applications should be complete and letters of recommendation received by this date. The position will remain open until filled, but not later than June 30, 2018.

CONTACT PERSON: Bogdan Cristescu: bcristes@ucsc.edu

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees. Inquiries regarding the University’s equal employment opportunity policies may be directed to: Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the University of California, Santa Cruz, CA 95064; (831) 459-2686.

Under Federal law, the University of California may employ only individuals who are legally able to work in the United States as established by providing documents as specified in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Certain UCSC positions funded by federal contracts or sub-contracts require the selected candidate to pass an E-Verify check. More information is available here or from the Academic Personnel Office (APO) at (831) 459-4300.

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