Monarch and Pollinator Restoration Ecologist

Sacramento, California
$45,000-$48,000 per year
Dec 08, 2017
Feb 06, 2018
Job Level
Mid level
Employment Type
Full time, Permanent
Salary Type


The Xerces Society is a growing nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat.  Our methods focus on education, scientific analysis, applied research, restoration, and advocacy to protect invertebrates such as bees, butterflies, mollusks, and dragonflies.  Established in 1971 and based in Portland, Oregon, the Society is at the forefront of invertebrate protection worldwide, harnessing the knowledge of scientists and the enthusiasm of citizens to implement conservation programs. We take action by protecting endangered species and their habitat, producing ground-breaking publications on insect conservation, training thousands of farmers and land managers to protect and manage habitat for beneficial insects, and raising public awareness about the invertebrates of forests, prairies, deserts, creeks, wetlands, and oceans. 


Join a growing team of ecologists, educators, advocates, and restoration practitioners working to conserve some of North America’s most important yet endangered pollinators.  Reporting to Xerces Society’s Director of Endangered Species and Aquatic Conservation, the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinator Restoration Ecologist will work with public land managers and private land owners to restore, enhance, and manage climate resilient habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators in California’s Central Valley.

The Xerces Society is a leader in conservation of native pollinators, including the western population of monarch butterflies. This position has been designed in response to the dramatic declines observed in many native bees and butterflies – since the 1980s, western monarch populations have declined by more than 95%. This position will work on the frontline of species recovery.

The successful applicant will provide technical assistance and deliver short courses to public land managers and private landowners to facilitate incorporating the needs of monarch butterflies and other native pollinators into existing restoration projects. The person who fills this position will manage all components of two large projects in California’s Central Valley that focus on restoring and enhancing habitat for monarch butterflies and other native pollinators. The Monarch and Pollinator Restoration Ecologist will work in collaboration with conservation biologists and pollinator habitat and conservation specialists in Xerces Society’s Endangered Species, Pollinator Conservation, and Pesticide programs and will work closely with partners from the US Fish & Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife, as well as farmers and other private landowners.  This position will be based in the Xerces Society’s Sacramento, California office.


Working independently and with other staff members of the Xerces Society, the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinator Restoration Ecologist will: 

  • Coordinate and manage all aspects of two large projects in California’s Central Valley focused on restoration of habitat for monarch butterflies and other native pollinators to create high quality, connected, resilient habitat that will thrive under current and future climate scenarios. 
  • Plan, organize, and lead multiple monarch butterfly and pollinator conservation short courses for public and natural area managers (including managers of wildlife refuges, urban/suburban parks, and roadsides), farmers, and other agricultural professionals.
  • Conduct site visits to natural areas managed by public agencies and private landowners, as well as farms.
  • Provide technical support to expand the capacity of managers of natural areas, urban parks, and roadsides, as well as farmers, to incorporate monarch butterfly and climate resilient pollinator habitat into existing restoration projects, where appropriate.
  • Provide input on restoration planning for monarch butterflies and pollinators; identify new opportunities to restore, enhance, and appropriately manage habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators within California’s Central Valley.
  • Directly assist land managers and landowners with implementing monarch butterfly and pollinator habitat enhancement, restoration, and management recommendations and track the number of acres that are improved or restored.
  • Develop monitoring plans and conduct post-restoration monitoring in natural areas and on farms.
  • Develop specific outreach tools for farmers, roadside managers, and other rights-of-way managers to conserve pollinators in a climate resilient manner.
  • Create a climate resilient pollinator curriculum for outreach events; provide training in climate resilient pollinator conservation.
  • Prepare project progress reports for the Xerces Society’s development team.
  • Respond to requests for information from Xerces Society team members, natural resource agencies, and the public about conserving monarch butterflies and other pollinators.
  • Represent the Xerces Society at professional conferences and local meetings through oral and/or poster presentations.
  • Maintain regular communication with a remotely based supervisor.
  • This job will require extensive travel to locations throughout California’s Central Valley; the ability to travel out of town and overnight during some parts of the year for up to 15 days/month is required.




  • Extensive project management experience.
  • Knowledge of identity, biology and habitat requirements of native insect pollinators, including monarch butterflies, in California.
  • Familiarity with the native flora of California’s Central Valley.
  • Experience in terrestrial habitat restoration.
  • Possession of a strong conservation ethic.
  • Willingness to become a supervisor of one or more staff members.
  • Exceptional and professional verbal and written communication skills, including ability to speak publicly and to large audiences, and to communicate in an effective, compelling manner.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with other Xerces Society staff members and with a wide variety of partners from diverse backgrounds.
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to manage multiple, complex projects, to prioritize work, and to consistently deliver high quality work products on schedule.
  • An understanding of how climate change is affecting and will continue to affect the western landscape, and how that may influence bee and butterfly populations into the future.The successful applicant will be able to integrate this knowledge into conservation planning efforts.
  • An understanding of habitat management practices in the Central Valley, including management of natural areas, agricultural habitats, rangelands, and roadsides.
  • An understanding of the conservation organizations that work in the Sacramento Valley and an ability to develop partnerships to further the goals of the project.
  • Ability to work independently on assigned tasks.
  • Ability to synthesize, interpret, and communicate complex scientific information in a manner that will influence conservation and habitat restoration practice.
  • Working knowledge of common software applications (e.g. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Web applications).



  • Experience restoring grassland and other terrestrial habitats in the western U.S. for bees and/or butterflies.
  • Supervisory experience.
  • Ability to learn new skills and gain new knowledge independently.
  • Fluency in Spanish.




  • A Bachelor’s degree (Master’s degree or Ph.D. preferred) in ecology, conservation biology, entomology, botany, natural resource management, or other relevant field, or 3–5 years of experience in endangered species or natural resource management, applied ecology, restoration, and/or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • A valid driver’s license.




  • Occasionally lift and move supplies, materials, equipment weighing up to 20 pounds.
  • Frequently traverse across natural areas, agricultural roads and fields, unpaved roads and walkways, and other unimproved trails for periods of 8 hours.
  • Drive vehicle for periods of up to 8 hours.
  • Work in the field under potentially adverse weather conditions.




Position is a regular, full-time, salaried exempt position, scheduled to work ~40 hrs/week. Annual rate will be $45,000-$48,000 per year.

BENEFITS: This position includes a generous benefits package: eleven paid holidays, paid time off, paid health and disability insurance, option to participate in a pre-tax flexible spending account for medical and dependent care expenses, participation in a 401k retirement program upon eligibility and a flexible work environment. If based at the Portland headquarters, there is an additional public transportation benefit.

TERMS: The Xerces Society is an at-will employer. Nothing in this job description restricts management’s right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time.

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification form upon hire.

MORE INFORMATION: The Xerces Society is an equal opportunity employer committed to workforce diversity. We encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply for this position. For more information on the Xerces Society and our programs, please see our website,


Combine cover letter, resume, and the names and contact information for three references into a single attachment in MS Word or Adobe PDF. In your cover letter, specifically state the earliest date by which you could start this position in Sacramento. Use your full name as the file name. Subject line of your email is: “Monarch Butterfly and Pollinator Restoration Ecologist” Send to



Unfortunately, due to the volume of communications we are unable to respond to inquiries from individual applicants. We ask that applicants do not contact our office via phone or email about their application. You will be contacted if selected for an interview. All applicants will receive an email notification once the position is filled.