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Grassland songbird monitoring interns


Bird Conservancy of the Rockies


ND and MT


United States

Last Date to Apply:

30 Mar 2018
Open until filled


Position: Grassland songbird monitoring interns
Organization: Bird Conservancy of the Rockies
Location: Western North Dakota (3-4) and eastern Montana (2)
Compensation: 700/mo living stipend + housing
Duration: 3 months (seasonal)
Start date: May 7, 2018 (approximate)


About the organization
Bird Conservancy of the Rockies conserves birds and their habitats through an integrated approach of science, education and stewardship. Our work extends from the Rockies to the Great Plains, Mexico and beyond. Our mission is advanced through sound science, achieved through empowering people, realized through stewardship and sustained through cross-border collaborations. We monitor and identify population trends, research habitat needs, engage landowners and managers in wildlife and habitat stewardship, and inspire audiences of all ages to be better stewards of the land. Together, we are improving native bird populations, the land, and the lives of people.


Project overview
Grassland songbird populations, including migratory species breeding in the mixed-grass prairies of the northern Great Plains, are among the most rapidly declining guilds in North America. This project seeks to determine basic demographic rates of grassland-nesting songbirds on their breeding grounds, including nest success and productivity, adult and juvenile survival, and effects of habitat and climate on these rates. Focal species include Baird’s sparrow, grasshopper sparrow, chestnut-collared longspur, and Sprague’s pipit. Check out our blog for more information: https://birdconserva.../a-bairds-life/


Intern responsibilities
Interns will participate in a demographic study of grassland-nesting songbirds in northeastern Montana and western North Dakota. Interns will work alongside professional seasonal technicians and permanent BCR staff to conduct a wide range of research activities intended to monitor nesting success, adult and juvenile survival, and habitat characteristics. Applicants must be able to walk long distances carrying field equipment, and be able to work long days that begin pre-dawn. Applicants must also be comfortable working independently in the field (after receiving training).


Skills intern will gain
Interns will gain hands on training and experience in a range of avian research methods including but not limited to: radio telemetry tracking, nest-searching and monitoring, vegetation sampling, and bird and nest identification. Interns will also learn to carefully follow scientific protocols, and to accurately record and enter data.


Desired qualifications:
• Hold or be pursuing B.S. degree in biology, ecology, wildlife management or related field
• A demonstrated interest in wildlife, conservation, and the outdoors
• Candidates with previous ecological field experience will be given preference
• Diligence in recording all data collected
• Strong work ethic and enthusiasm while in the field
• Top notch sense of humor
• Possess or be able to obtain basic first aid certification
• Must have the ability to share living quarters with others
• Valid driver’s license with proof of auto insurance


To apply
Please send a cover letter, resume, and three references in a single PDF document to jacy.bernath-plaisted@birdconservancy.org. Applicants will be reviewed as they are received, and the position will remain open until filled. Indicate the position title you are applying for in the subject line (e.g. NGP internship). Interviews will likely begin in mid-February.