Wolf Tech (volunteer)

Employer
US Geological Survey
Location
Ely, Minnesota
Salary
$15 food stipend plus free housing
Posted
Mar 19, 2019
Closes
Apr 02, 2019
Sector
Government
Discipline
Wildlife Biology
Employment Type
Volunteer

Please note that positions may be filled as applications are received. Last date applications accepted is 4/2/19, but positions may be filled before that date! Wolf Tech Positions (volunteer)

Four volunteer field technicians are needed to live-trap, drug, and radio-collar wolves and conduct acoustic surveys in the Superior National Forest, Minnesota starting from the last week of May (arrival Monday May 26) through early October via vehicles on forest roads and hiking off-trail.

Position Background:

The wolf tech positions on Dr. L. David Mech’s USGS Wolf-Deer project involves wolf trapping (end of May through early summer, likely <10 wolves will be radioed) and radio tracking of both deer and wolves in the Superior National Forest as well as continuous acoustic surveys of approximately 3 wild wolf packs from July-early October.  This involves physically and chemically restraining wolves, collecting measurements and blood, conducting telemetry, necropsying wolves and deer, setting up and maintaining acoustical survey devices, locating rendezvous sites and other field work.  We may also be collecting wolf scats during weekly systematic road surveys / abandoned rendezvous sites for a genetic population analysis. 

Long periods driving trucks on gravel, curvy and sometimes wet or possibly snowy roads are required.  Safe driving is imperative, especially given the occurrence of logging trucks.  Also, safely hiking off trail with a pack up to 50 lbs, navigating in the backcountry, excellent physical fitness, and attention to detail are important for this position. 

Summer in northeastern Minnesota can be very humid and super buggy and technicians will be working with rotting carcasses during wolf trapping and necropsies.  We make our own bait for wolf trapping so cutting up and curing carcasses is routine.  Early fall in northeastern Minnesota can be very challenging due to cold temperatures and freezing rain and snow.  Thus, technicians will need to be comfortable with what many people would consider uncomfortable situations. 

Technicians will be working and living in close quarters without scheduled days off (although generally between traplines – approximately every 16 days – there are usually 1 or 2 days off to resupply and prepare for the next trapline) because traps need to be checked every morning and radio signals checked.

It is always extremely important that the applicant be safety-conscious.

Applicants will need to be able to work well independently as well as part of a team, closely following instructions but able to make wise decisions.

Also, even if the applicant has experience doing much of the above field work, they must understand the need to follow this study’s methods as this is a long-term study (50+ years) requiring continuity within the dataset.

These positions will be supervised by Dr. Shannon Barber-Meyer.

For Research Details: Mech. L. D.  2009.  Long-term research on wolves in the Superior National Forest.   Pp. 15-34 in A. P. Wydeven, E. J. Heske, and T. R, Van Deelen (eds).  Recovery of Gray Wolves in the Great Lakes Region of the United States:  an Endangered Species Success Story.  Springer, New York, NY.  350 pp.

 

Qualifications:

*Previous medium-to-large mammal trapping & wildlife chemical immobilization course are highly favored.

1. Completed Bachelor of Science in wildlife, biology, ecology, zoology or related by the time the volunteer position begins.

2.  Great attention to detail, organizational skills and very clear handwriting are necessary.

3. Excellent references and good grades.

4. Experience with wildlife field research, animal capture and handling (especially large mammals), telemetry, necropsy, trapping, etc.

5. Willingness and ability to work long hours in wilderness in all kinds of weather.

6. Outdoor and backcountry skills such as orienteering (compass, maps, GPS), hiking, backpacking, etc.

7. Ability to relate well with the public and team members.

8. Must be a U.S. citizen with a Social Security number and a US bank account (required for stipend processing).  Due to administrative constraints we are unable to consider international applicants.

9. Current First Aid and CPR certification or Wilderness First Responder preferred.

Compensation:

Free housing, including cooking facilities; excellent experience with live-trapping, radio-tagging, acoustical surveys, and when possible necropsy experience; $15.00/day food stipend (stipend only if US Citizen with SS card and US bank account).  (Note: After an initial 1 month delay when you begin your volunteer position, approximately every three weeks a direct deposit will be made to your account for the $15/day that you'll be paid for a food stipend.  You get paid for every day you are here working as a volunteer but some of the pay will arrive after you have left the project.  During the fall – there is another 1 ½ month delay in pay due to the start of a new government fiscal year, so mid-September and early October pay arrives at the end of October).

To Apply: (please see Important Application Notes below)

Please do not apply if you are unable to commit to the entire period.  We cannot hire volunteers that start only to leave and take another position or volunteers that need to start later in the season due to the end date of their current position/school, etc.  We can only accept applicants that are available and willing to commit to the entire period (note dates are on the application form have not been updated – the dates pertinent for this position are arrival May 26 working through early October).

Please return completed application (see below for the application form) and unofficial transcript to Dr. Shannon Barber-Meyer, U.S. Geological Survey, sbarber-meyer AT usgs DOT gov  Please completely fill out the application form itself (e.g., please do not leave sections of the application form incomplete, and please do not just reference your resume or other documents).

IMPORTANT APPLICATION NOTES:

1) If you are offered and accept the position, we expect you to fulfill the length of the position.  If you might potentially take another position that would cause you to leave this position early, please do not accept the offer of this position.  We can only hire technicians that are able to stay for the entire duration.  Thank you for understanding.

2) If you anticipate an absence during the position (a wedding, conference, etc.) alert Dr. Barber-Meyer to that prior to being hired because it may change whether we are able to hire you.  In rare cases we can accommodate an absence depending on timing and length but in most cases we simply cannot because wolf traps must be checked every single day.  There are normally no scheduled days off because for wolf trapping days off depend completely on wolf captures (unpredictable).  Thank you for understanding.

APPLICATION STARTS BELOW

Application for

VOLUNTEER WOLF AND DEER TECHNICIAN POSITIONS

USGS Minnesota Wolf and Deer Project, Ely, MN

 

Please email application and unofficial transcript to Dr. Shannon Barber-Meyer at sbarber-meyer AT usgs DOT gov

 

Contact info

Name:

Email:

Phone:

Address:

Education

Degree Major and Date:

University and GPA:

Relevant Work Experience

Employer/Dates/Summary of Duties:

Employer/Dates/Summary of Duties:

Employer/Dates/Summary of Duties:

Employer/Dates/Summary of Duties:

Experience

animal capture and handling (ex. type of traps used, species captured, chemical immobilization, blood draws, etc.):

following detailed instructions & neatly (good handwriting), accurately, and completely recording data:

data entry / data management:

trapping:

orienteering:

backpacking / hiking:

radiotelemetry:

acoustic surveys (audiomoths, howl boxes, etc.):

camera trapping:

mechanic / maintenance skills:

driving on gravel roads and on snowy/icy roads:

CPR & First Aid or Wilderness First Responder current (or past if none current) certifications and dates of expiration:

Do you have a valid U.S. state driver’s license?

References: (Please provide 3, relevant work references)

Name, position, and email address:

Name, position, and email address:

Name, position, and email address:

Thank you for your application and your interest in the USGS MN Wolf and Deer Project!  Shannon