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Lead Fishery Harvest Estimation Research Scientist - F&W Research Scientist 2 - Perm - 01545-24

State of Washington
Tumwater, Washington, US
Closing date
Jun 25, 2024

View more

Academic / Research, Government
Conservation science
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time



This position has been reopened to expand the candidate pool. If you have previously applied for this position, you do not need to reapply. The first review of applications will take place on May 30.

Fish Program - Science Division

*Olympia, Washington - Thurston County

* The assigned duty station for this position is Olympia, however, other duty stations will be considered at the discretion of the hiring supervisor.

Lead and direct the analyses for WDFW's new automated catch estimation systems to revolutionize sustainable fishery management in Washington State.

Conduct fishery research at the forefront of scientific inquiry through the development and application of advanced theoretical, methodological, and analytical concepts.

Develop complex computer models and analyses using sophisticated statistical and analytical procedures that result in improved techniques to advise the management and conservation of fisheries resources.

Your expertise in quantitative methods and developing software code will be instrumental in creating automated catch estimation systems, collaborating with cross-disciplinary teams and external partners. This position offers the opportunity to make a significant impact on the conservation of Washington's aquatic ecosystems while fostering an inclusive and innovative work environment.

First rainbow trout - Photo credit: Julie Harper

Why Join WDFW?

Innovation: Be at the forefront of developing electronic monitoring and reporting systems.

Impact: Play a crucial role in resource management mandates related to salmon, steelhead, shellfish, and more.

Collaboration: Work with diverse teams within WDFW and establish partnerships with external entities.

Professional Growth: Contribute to literature reviews, collaborative research, and the development of scientific articles.

Sampling Puget Sound Crab - Photo credit: WDFW

Here is what you will be doing,

* Serve as the lead data scientist for fish and shellfish catch estimation using the new mobile phone app-based electronic catch record card system (E-CRC).
* Oversees analysis to support harvest monitoring and reporting during recreational fisheries in both marine and freshwater areas of Washington State.
* Provides accurate and unbiased estimates of angler harvest and associated impacts to fishery stocks in support of management and conservation goals.
* Conduct research to enhance the scientific rigor of monitoring methods and study designs and increase WDFW's science capacity related to sport catch estimation, angler survey methods, and the use of mobile reported data for fisheries management and research activities.
* Other fishery management duties as assigned or requested by WDFW staff. Provide analyses and technical representation for issues pertaining to recreational fisheries, including catch, harvest, and economic valuation / impacts.


* Work Setting, including hazards:
* Most of the work is conducted in the office (> 95% of the time), but field work may be conducted on rare occasions if needed.
* Field work may include inclement weather, rough water, noise, odors, repetitive movements of hands, finger manipulations, long periods of sitting, squatting, walking, operating a boat with an outboard motor, climbing in and out of boats, sampling salmon in a boat, carrying, bending, kneeling, lifting (50 lb. max.), working and standing in a confined space, working with fish blood and slime, slippery surfaces, raingear, equipment holsters, personal floatation devices, using knives and other equipment around fish.
* Possible encounters with bees, yellow jackets, and other insects.
* Must be able to negotiate water in emergency situations.

* Schedule:
* Hours of work are generally 40 hours per week, Monday through Friday, from 8:00 am through 5:00 pm, but seasonal evening and weekend work may be needed.

* Travel Requirements:
* Travel may be required (approximately 10-14 days annually) as a NOF team member.

* Tools and Equipment:
* Agency desktop computer, agency laptop, agency phone, agency vehicles.

* Customer Interactions:
* Regular interaction with WDFW staff, Federal fisheries representatives (e.g., from NOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service), North of Falcon and Pacific Fishery Management Council representatives, representatives of other external stakeholders, and the public.


* A Master's degree in Science, Statistics, Mathematics and/or Computer Science, or a related field.


* Four (4) years of professional experience leading fisheries, wildlife, or ecological research studies, demonstrating experience in study design, project implementation/management, and quantitative analysis of ecological data.


* A Doctoral degree in one of the above fields of study will substitute or one year of the required experience.


* Two years of professional experience leading fisheries, wildlife, or ecological research studies, demonstrating experience in study design, project implementation/management, and quantitative analysis of ecological data


* Three years of experience as a Fish and Wildlife Research Scientist 1


* Valid driver's license


In addition to those required qualifications, our ideal applicant will also have some or all of the following:

* Two articles published in scientific peer-reviewed journal (one article must be as senior author, the second article must be as senior or secondary author.)


* Experience or training in one or more areas: catch/harvest monitoring from recreational or commercial fisheries, salmon stock assessment, escapement estimation, forecasting, population modeling, harvest modeling, fish and wildlife population monitoring, sampling theory.
* Experience with descriptive, comparative, and advanced statistical approaches, including:
* Experience with design and analysis of recreational fishery creel studies.

* Experience developing and modifying code using statistical programming languages and/or platforms such as R, Python, JAGS, and STAN, and TMB.
* Experience in design, development, and maintenance of database systems and workflows, such as Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) processes, using various programming languages such as SQL, Python, R, Java, and C++.
* Experience collaborating on code-based projects using version control platforms such as Github or Bitbucket.


* Knowledge of Pacific salmon biology and management.
* Knowledge of Puget Sound and Washington Coast watersheds, fish populations, and fisheries.
* Knowledge of fisheries sampling techniques in rivers and streams.

Skills and abilities

* Ability to develop quantitative study designs and execute analytical approaches to address scientific questions, and ultimately draw conclusions from biological data based on facts and evidence.
* Ability to clearly articulate scientific concepts and facts, both orally and in writing.
* Experience presenting research findings at scientific conferences and to general audiences.
* Demonstrated success in writing scientific reports and peer-reviewed research articles, including one peer-reviewed research article as a lead author.
* Ability to set clear project objectives, develop a work plan, and meet deadlines.

Please note: Failure to follow the instructions below may lead to disqualification.

Experience and education selected, listed, and detailed in the Supplemental Questions must be verifiable in the application.

In order to successfully apply for this position, you MUST complete your profile at and attach the following to your profile before completing the online application:

* A cover letter describing how you meet the qualifications of this position (Generic cover letter will not be accepted).
* A current resume.
* Three professional references.


All new employees must complete an Employment Eligibility Verification Form (I-9 Form) on their first day of work. If hired for this or any position at WDFW, you will be required to provide documentation proving you are eligible to work in the United States. For a list of acceptable documents, please use the following link:


Learn about our agency and the perks of working for WDFW!

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has some of the most talented people in the natural resource field. We celebrate and value diversity, appreciating that a workforce composed of those from different backgrounds and experiences creates an inclusive environment, strengthens positive relationships with the local community, and brings new perspectives and approaches to fulfilling the agency's mission. We value demonstrated skill in living WDFW values of Accountability, Service, Professionalism, Integrity, Respect, and Empathy (ASPIRE).

WDFW employees may be eligible for the following:

Medical/Dental/Vision for employee & dependent(s), Public Employees Retirement System (PERS), Vacation, Sick, and other Leave*, 11 Paid Holidays per year*, Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Tuition Waiver, Long Term Disability & Life Insurance, Deferred Compensation Programs, Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP), Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA), Employee Assistance Program, Commute Trip Reduction Incentives (Download PDF reader), Combined Fund Drive, SmartHealth.


This position is in the bargaining unit represented by the Washington Association of Fish & Wildlife Professionals and is subject to the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the State of Washington, Department of Fish & Wildlife, and the Washington Association of Fish & Wildlife Professionals.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Employer


To take advantage of veteran preference, please do the following:

* Email a copy of your DD214 (Member 4 copy), NGB 22 or USDVA signed verification of service letter to
* Subject line must include recruitment number, position, and Vet (for example: #10155 Biologist 1 - Veteran)
* Include your name as it appears on your application in


To take advantage of military spouse preference, please do the following:

* Notify us of your military spouse status by email at
* Subject line must include recruitment number, position, and MS (for example: #10155 Biologist 1 - MS)
* Include your name as it appears on your application in

Note: Please blackout any PII (personally identifiable information) data such as social security numbers.

As part of WDFW's efforts to advance respectful and inclusive work environments, the Agency expects inclusivity as part of our professional interactions and communications. Therefore, we want to ensure that all individuals feel welcome, are treated fairly and respectfully. All staff are empowered to fully contribute to serving their work unit, Agency, and the citizens of Washington.

The Department of Fish and Wildlife is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, disabled and Vietnam era veterans and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply.

Persons needing accommodation in the application process or this announcement in an alternative format please contact Jayme Chase by phone 360-902-2278 or email, or the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) at 800-833-6388.

If you are having technical difficulties creating, accessing, or completing your application, please call NEOGOV toll-free at (855) 524-5627 or

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