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Ellen Paul

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  1. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council. COMMENTS ON THE DRAFT REPORT, DESCRIBED BELOW, ARE SOUGHT. COMMENTS MUST BE SUBMITTED ELECTRONICALLY BY 2 FEB 2019. The draft report on Reducing Administrative Burden for Researchers: Animal Care and Use in Research by the 21st Century Cures Act Working Group is officially available: https://olaw.nih.gov/sites/default/files/21CCA_draft_report.pdf. The 2016 21st Century Cures Act (21CCA) directed the National Institutes of Health (NIH), in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to review applicable regulations and policies for the care and use of laboratory animals and to make revisions, as appropriate, to reduce administrative burden on investigators while maintaining the integrity and credibility of research findings and protection of research animals. The Act instructs NIH to: (1) seek the input of experts, if appropriate; (2) identify ways to ensure applicable regulations and policies are not inconsistent, overlapping, or unnecessarily duplicative; (3) take steps to eliminate or reduce identified inconsistencies, overlap, or duplication among such regulations and policies; and (4) take other actions, as appropriate, to improve the coordination of regulations and policies with respect to research with laboratory animals. NIH, USDA, and FDA convened a Working Group of federal subject matter experts that carried out a review and prepared a report of its recommendations as directed in the 21CCA. To identify inconsistent, overlapping, and unnecessarily duplicative regulations and policies, the Working Group reviewed published reports, communications, and surveys highlighting the regulations and policies that contribute to researchers’ administrative burden (Section 1, page 2); conducted listening sessions and met with organizations and stakeholders (Section 2, page 3); and issued a Request for Information (RFI) and analyzed stakeholder responses (Section 3, page 4). Appendix 1. Analysis of Key Findings from the Reports, Communications, and Surveys presents a condensed description of the key findings from the eight reports, communications, and surveys; the Working Group’s analysis; and proposed actions. Appendix 2. Analysis of Responses to the Request for Information presents a summary of the public responses received for the eleven RFI topics, the Working Group’s analysis, and proposed actions. The Working Group identified the following areas in which there is opportunity to reduce administrative burden: semiannual inspections by Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees (IACUC), animal activities (protocol) review, and institutional reporting. Recommended steps to reduce duplicative regulations and policies are provided on page 5. The Working Group identified the following areas in which there is opportunity to improve coordination: guidance on federal standards, agency harmonization, and training and resources.
  2. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council. FULL REPORT "During the first two years of the Trump administration, Secretary Ryan Zinke and his political team have unleashed constant—and ongoing—attacks on science, from sidelining the work of the agency's own scientists to systematically refusing to acknowledge or act on climate change. These actions have far-reaching and serious implications for our health, the environment, and the future of our public lands. Science under Siege at the Department of the Interior reviews nearly two years of actions by the DOI under Secretary Zinke and identifies the most damaging and egregious examples of anti-science policies and practices. Sytematically suppressing science Secretary Zinke’s DOI has stifled politically inconvenient research, undermined science-based rules and regulations, and consistently put the interests of coal, gas, and oil companies ahead of public health. Some of the more glaring examples include: Cancelling a scientific study evaluating the health effects of mountaintop-removal coal mining Stopping research designed to improve safety at offshore drilling sites Mandating that scientific grants be reviewed by a political appointee with no science background' You are here Center for Science and Democracy Science Under Siege at the Department of the Interior (2018) Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and his political appointees have overseen relentless attacks on science and put our nation's parks, health, and wildlife at risk. Download Full report During the first two years of the Trump administration, Secretary Ryan Zinke and his political team have unleashed constant—and ongoing—attacks on science, from sidelining the work of the agency's own scientists to systematically refusing to acknowledge or act on climate change. These actions have far-reaching and serious implications for our health, the environment, and the future of our public lands. Science under Siege at the Department of the Interior reviews nearly two years of actions by the DOI under Secretary Zinke and identifies the most damaging and egregious examples of anti-science policies and practices. Sytematically suppressing science Secretary Zinke’s DOI has stifled politically inconvenient research, undermined science-based rules and regulations, and consistently put the interests of coal, gas, and oil companies ahead of public health. Some of the more glaring examples include: Cancelling a scientific study evaluating the health effects of mountaintop-removal coal mining Stopping research designed to improve safety at offshore drilling sites Mandating that scientific grants be reviewed by a political appointee with no science background Photo: Kate Wellington/Creative Commons (Flickr) Failing to acknowledge or act on climate change Secretary Zinke has systematically ignored, sidelined, and blocked efforts to research, communicate about, or respond to climate change. At the same time, he has actively promoted policies that run counter to what science shows is the most important step the nation must take to address global warming and prevent its most catastrophic impacts: a massive and rapid reduction in our use of fossil fuels. This deliberate sidelining of climate science has taken several forms: Refusing to acknowledge reality by striking climate change from the agency’s strategic vision and rescinding policies that factor climate change into future planning Covering up bad news by delaying and burying reports dealing with climate impacts and censoring established science in press releases Moving backwards by taking actions that are almost certain to increase global warming emissions and fossil fuel extraction on public lands Silencing and intimidating agency scientists and staff Under Secretary Zinke, not only is science a target but so too are the scientists and staff who carry out the department’s crucial work. Many recent policies restrict the ability of DOI scientists and other staffers to fulfill the department’s mission, while other actions contribute to a hostile work environment. These include: Freezing out advice from science advisory committees Restricting DOI scientists from communicating about their work Removing, reassigning, and intimidating scientists and other DOI staff Recommendations The damage from Secretary Zinke’s policies is mounting. They have caused harm to public lands, public health and safety, and the country’s wildlife and habitats. Left unchecked, the effects will take decades to repair, and yet the consequences of climate change are already upon us. We have no time to lose. Congress, particularly the House Committee on Natural Resources and the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, should increase congressional oversight of the DOI and thoroughly investigate all alleged violations of scientific integrity and all reports of suppressed or censored scientific studies. Congress and others should also demand that the DOI's efforts to protect America’s public lands and wildlife include and factor in climate change, both now and in the future. Scientists and science supporters should bring attention to DOI activities that sideline science and threaten public lands or health. Any scientist—indeed, anyone—can raise their voice and raise awareness when DOI activities threaten public lands or health. Call your representative, visit their local offices, or write a letter to your local newspaper’s editor. UCS has tips and resources to help guide your efforts: www.ucsusa.org/actiontips. Local stakeholders, partners of public lands, and the outdoor industry should engage with the DOI and participate in public comment periods and other DOI rule-making processes, especially ones that affect public lands in your region, state, and community. As regular users of public lands, local partners and stakeholders are uniquely positioned to see any changes occurring on the ground as a result of DOI actions. Share what you see with your community, other local stakeholders, and the media."
  3. Position with USGS open to graduate student or recent graduate. Please share with anyone you think might be interested: Student Research Opportunity: Classification of Bird Habitat using Remote Sensing U.S. Geological Survey, Wetland and Aquatic Research Center We anticipate hiring a Student Services Contractor to assist with a remote sensing project to monitor waterfowl habitat and shorebird habitat on agricultural landscapes along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast from Texas to Alabama using satellite imagery. This student contract position is open to: (1) current undergraduate student with two or more years of classes; (2) a current graduate student; or (3) a recent graduate with a B.S. degree (i.e., graduated within the last year). This Student Services Contractor will help with the following activities: (1) geospatial data compilation; (2) assess waterfowl and shorebird habitats via classification of Landsat satellite imagery; (3) data management; (4) geospatial data analysis; (5) figure and table preparation; and (6) verbal and written communication of results. The Student Services Contractor will work with Nicholas Enwright (https://www.usgs.gov/staff-profiles/nicholas-enwright). In order to be eligible, applicants must have the status listed above and be eligible to work in the U.S. as a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident. The applicant should have an interest and experience in remote sensing and geospatial analyses. Pay will be commensurate with education. To apply for this position, please send the following information to Nicholas Enwright via email (enwrightn@usgs.gov): (1) A cover letter explaining their interest in the position (2) A resume or CV (3) A sample geospatial-focused report or product, particularly one with remote sensing components (e.g., a class paper or writing assignment) Please send this information in an attachment via email with the following subject line: Application- Student Research Opportunity. A single attachment is preferred. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. For questions, contact Nicholas Enwright (enwrightn@usgs.gov)
  4. Reminder: Deadline to Submit Applications for LACA Section Professional Development Scholarship is Fast Approaching! Applications due by 15 December This is a friendly reminder that the deadline to submit applications for a professional development scholarship from the Latin American and Caribbean (LACA) Section of SCB is less than two weeks away! All applications are due by Saturday 15 December! The scholarship opportunity is available to graduate students working in the Latin American and Caribbean region. LACA will offer four competitive scholarships of $2,000 US each in support of expenses associated with emerging conservation professionals conducting their thesis work in disciplines and subjects directly related to applied conservation science, and for which some tangible conservation benefit or outcome is anticipated. Rationale: Some of the most pressing issues with respect to conservation are found across Latin America and the Caribbean geographical regions. Universities and colleges across most of the LACA membership region do not currently have adequate support for the professional development of their emerging conservation professionals. As a consequence, more support is needed for the projects of LACA graduate students who have the potential to be greatly impactful in conservation. This scholarship opportunity is intended to increase support for the most creative and innovative conservation graduate students in pursuing meaningful conservation projects in the LACA region, so they may pursue and conduct outstanding research in applied conservation natural and social sciences. Deadline: December 15, 2018 Eligibility Criteria: To be eligible, students must: (1) be a member in good standing of the Society for Conservation Biology, (2) be a member of SCB’s LACA Section, (3) be a native citizen of a Latin American or Caribbean nation (i.e., countries and territories of the Americas excluding the United States, Canada, and Greenland), (4) be enrolled in a graduate program at a University or College in a Latin American or Caribbean nation, (5) demonstrate financial need, and (6) be conducting a graduate research project with high potential for immediate conservation impact. Application Guidelines: Candidates working on topics of greatest importance to the mission1] of The Society for Conservation Biology will receive the highest consideration. Please submit the following materials by December 15: 1. Proposal Summary or Statement (3 pages maximum, single spaced). Provide an overview as to what your work is, and why your work is important relative to existing studies, including how/why it is different, or what gap/problem it is uniquely addressing. Also, discuss how it is relevant to SCB’s mission, and what you hope to accomplish across your career. 2. Budget. Please include a budget table or description showing how the scholarship funds will be spent, and please briefly discuss your financial need (1 paragraph) 3. CV (3 pages max, any format) 4. Indicate your country of citizenship and SCB Membership Number 5. Two letters of reference (one of which is required to be from your major professor or advisor; in the letter, your advisor should briefly state why these funds are needed) 6. Undergraduate and current graduate transcripts, and GPA Successful applicants will be required to furnish receipts for expenses up to the full amount of the award. We expect this scholarship will be a recurring annual or bi-annual opportunity, and we are proud to be the first SCB Section to offer such an opportunity in support of further developing the careers of its graduate student members. Please note that as of this year, preference will be given to applicants that have been SCB members in good standing prior to the year of application (international student rates apply). All files must be in either MS Word, pdf, or jpeg format. Please send all application materials as a single zip/compressed file saved as “last name_first initial(s)” of the applicant (e.g., Rodriguez_JRC) in a single email with the subject line “LACA SCHOLARSHIP” to: Dr. Anthony J. Giordano, LACA Scholarship Committee Chair Email: lacabd@conbio.org
  5. Ellen Paul

    Patrick J. Gould, 1934-2018

    Patrick J. Gould was born 1934, and received his Ph.D. from the University of Arizona, and served as a Research Curator for the Pacific Ocean Biological Survey Program, 1963-1964. He authored a text of Techniques for Shipboard Surveys of Marine Birds and another on the Distribution and Abundance of Marine Birds and Mammals Wintering in the Kodiak Area of Alaska and other papers and texts about marine birds. He worked for the USGS Biological Resources Division in Alaska.
  6. October 11, 2018 The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) announced a new direct hiring authority in various science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) positions in a memorandum issued by acting director Margaret Weichert to all federal agency heads on October 11. The memorandum is part of the larger President’s Management Agenda released in March 2018, which establishes a long-term vision for modernizing the federal government’s workforce. According to the OPM website, federal agencies can use a direct-hire authority to fill vacancies when a critical hiring need or severe shortage of candidates exists. Direct-hire expedites the hiring process by eliminating traditional protocol specifications for rating and ranking applicants, giving preference for veterans, and following the "rule of three" procedure of providing specific reasons why none of the top three applicants are acceptable prior to considering other candidates. The new authorization will open positions to direct-hire in fields including biological science, fishery biology, and physical science, according to a copy of the memorandum obtained by FedSmith, a digital news service. According to the memo, agencies will still be required to request an applicable pre-employment background investigation to establish whether candidates are suitable for federal employment. The memo states that the authority expires five years from the date of approval. https://www.fedsmith.com/2018/10/11/opm-announces-new-direct-hiring-authority-certain-positions/
  7. Ellen Paul

    David Neal Pashley, 1950 - 2018

    David Neal Pashley, Ph.D Dr. Pashley was born on 6 April 1950 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. He moved to California and graduated from Santa Monica High School in 1968. In 1974 he graduated from Humboldt State University with a B.S. in Wildlife Management. David began his Ph.D. work in the School of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, in August 1982 and received his degree in 1988. His thesis was titled "A Distributional Analysis of the Warblers of the West Indies." He began his career with the Nature Conservancy of Louisiana, examining the effects of land use practices on neotropical migratory birds in bottomland hardwood forests. In 1995, Dr. Pashley joined the newly formed American Bird Conservancy and was a mainstay of that organization for 23 years, leaving only after illness precluded him from working. During that time, he was a leading figure in North American bird conservation, authoring or co-authoring such seminal documents as "Setting Conservation Priorities for Landbirds in the United States: the Partners in Flight Approach" (published in the Auk in 2000), the Partners in Flight Handbook on Species Assessment, the Partners in Flight Landbird Conservation Plan, and several of the State of the Birds annual reports. In 2016, he was awarded the Partners in Flight Lifetime Achievement Award. He was also instrumental in the implementation of the North American Bird Conservation Initiative, serving as a member of the international committee from its inception. In 2002, Dr. Pashley was awarded the Chandler Robbins Award 2003 by the American Birding Association, an award given to an individual who has made significant contributions either to the education of birders or to bird conservation and the "management or preservation of habitats on which birds and birding depends. Dr. Pashley most recently served as the Vice President for Conservation Programs at the American Bird Conservancy.
  8. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council. The Dept of interior is asking for permission to destroy records about oil and gas leases, mining, dams, wells, timber sales, marine conservation, fishing, endangered species, non-endangered species, critical habitats, land acquisition, and lots more. Basically records from every agency within the Interior Department, including the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, US Fish & Wildlife Service, US Geological Survey, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and others. This is all content that would normally go to NARA for collection and preservation. It is apparently an enormous quantity of information DEADLINE TO COMMENT: NOV 26 Comments may be filed as follows: https://www.archives.gov/about/regulations/comments.html a. Access the Federal eRulemaking Portal at: www.regulations.gov If you have the regulation’s docket or RIN number: Enter it into the "Keyword or ID" box; Select "proposed rule" in the document type box; Click on the button "submit a comment"; Fill out the information requested in the submission form; Attach your comment as an uploaded file or type or paste it into the comment box; Click the "submit" button one time; and Copy down your comment receipt number in case you need to track the comment. If you do not have the regulation’s docket or RIN number: You can search for the regulation by type of document, using keywords such as the agency name or the topic area, and by status (such as regulations closing soon or newly posted ones). Once you find the regulation, follow the last four steps above to submit your comment. b. Fax your comments to: (301) 837-0319 Include the regulation’s docket or RIN number and address your fax to: Regulations Comments Desk c. Hand-deliver, mail, or send your comments by courier to: Regulations Comments Desk (SP) Suite 4100, Strategy Division Office of Strategy and Communication National Archives and Records Administration 8601 Adelphi Road College Park, MD 20740-6001
  9. Many thanks to the bird banders and other BANDIT users who have already participated in the University of Baltimore survey about BANDIT. If you have not yet participated, please take 10 minutes to provide your feedback by the end of this week (details below). The BBL is beginning the process of developing a web-based replacement for our existing data submission software, BANDIT. As part this process, we are collaborating with graduate students in the Interface Design and Information Architecture program from the University of Baltimore to get feedback from permitted banders and other BANDIT users. Brandon Turner, a master's student from the University of Baltimore, has designed a survey to assist the BBL in redesigning a more user-friendly and effective process for submitting data by assessing the needs of current BANDIT users. You can choose whether or not to participate in this study. If you choose to participate, you may withdraw at any time. Who should participate? 1. ALL permitted bird banders in the US and Canada, even if they do not use BANDIT themselves. 2. BANDIT users who are not permit holders, such as those who manage data for a permit holder. What is required to participate? The survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete and is comprised of multiple choice and short answer questions. Please have your permit number(s) available. If you have multiple permits, please complete the survey only once to reflect your overall experience with BANDIT. Follow this link to provide YOUR feedback on BANDIT: https://umaryland.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3PKsmQ90NLGmahv (If the link does not open, you may copy and paste this into your browser?s address bar.) P.S. This information has been distributed to all active banders in the US and Canada for which the BBL has email addresses. If someone else on your permit manages data, please complete the survey yourself and forward survey information so your data manager may provide feedback as well.
  10. Ellen Paul

    Thomas W. Custer 1945 - 2018

    Thomas W. Custer, a noted waterbird biologist, passed away peacefully at home on Oct. 12, 2018. Dr. Custer, who received his PhD in Zoology from the University of California, Berkley in 1974, started his professional career with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD. He was next stationed in Victoria, TX along the Gulf Coast, and then finally moved to the upper Midwest to take a job at what is now the USGS Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center in La Crosse, WI. He remained a research scientist with the Department of Interior for the rest of his career producing more than 100 peer-reviewed scientific publications. He worked until his death because that is what he loved to do. His passion was to collect and analyze data and then publish those findings. His research focused primarily on the effects of contaminants on bird populations. He worked mostly on aquatic birds, such as the black-crowned night heron, many other heron and egret species, as well as, terns and waterfowl. More recently he used tree swallows to understand contaminant effects. He also studied the energetics of Lapland Longspurs near Barrow, AK, declining moose populations in northwestern MN, and even worked on lizard species in NM He investigated an eclectic mix of contaminants including PCBs, dioxins and furans, and trace metals such as mercury and lead, but he was more recently delving into the effects of many of the newer contaminants such as the brominated flame retardants, perfluorinated chemicals, and pharmaceuticals and personal care products. He is survived by his wife, Christine, also a noted waterbird biologist at the USGS Upper Midwest Environmental Science Center., who co-authored many scientific publications with her husband. In 2017, the Custers were awarded the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) Government Service Award for their work in avian ecotoxicology which has contributed to the research on contaminant exposure and effects on reproduction and other biomarkers in bird populations
  11. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council. Aurelia Skipwith, currently the the deputy assistant secretary for fish, wildlife and parks at the Department of the Interior, has been nominated to head the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The position has not had a permanent director since the end of the Obama administration. Until August 2018, Greg Sheehan held the post in an acting capacity. Ms. Skipwith is a biologist and lawyer who spent more than six years at the agriculture giant Monsanto. She joined the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 2013. However, she seems not to meet the statutory requirement for this position, which, under 16 U.S.C. 742(b) mandates that: No individual may be appointed as the Director unless he is, by reason of scientific education and experience, knowledgeable in the principles of fisheries and wildlife management.Although Ms. Skipwith has a master's degree, it is in animal science (Purdue University, 2005). The areas of specialization offered in that program are: Animal Behavior and Welfare, Cellular and Molecular Biology, Genetics, Management, Meat Science and Food Safety, Neuroscience, Nutrition, and Physiology. In addition, Ph.D. programs are offered in the area of Interdisciplinary Genetics (IGNT). After earning a law degree, she spent four months as an intern in a USDA foreign agriculture program focusing on crops, then seven months as an intellectual property consultant for USAID, focusing on food security. She next spent slightly over a year as assistant general counsel and regulatory affairs coordinator for a company that makes animal food. She began her career at Monsanto and worked her way up from a lab technician to sustainable agriculture partnership manager.
  12. https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/514601800?fbclid=IwAR3ydl4yuEFpGRnlvVLkpMnzCLJ4twlVhIWS7JIPv9jK39xw6PExe3CpAgk Summary This position is part of the Division of Migratory Birds. As a Wildlife Biologist (Ornithology) you will be responsible for facilitating binational biological planning, evaluation, research, and habitat conservation activities for the Sonoran Joint Venture. Applicants must have a professional working proficiency in Spanish. This announcement is being advertised concurrently under R2-19-10338449-LLP-MP for current and former federal employees serving under a competitive service career or career-conditional appointment or reinstatement eligible. You must apply to each announcement separately if you wish to be considered under both recruitment methods. The duties of the position include but are not limited to: Leading the Sonoran Joint Venture (SJV) Science Working Group Maintaining and updating the Bird Conservation and Waterfowl Management appendices of the SJV Conservation implementation Plan Providing leadership to federal, state, and local conservation groups in the interpretation and implementation of the conservation objectives and priorities of the SJV Conservation Implementation Plan Developing, maintaining, and promoting SJV science databases Leading the process of review and ranking of the SJV Awards Program proposals Working with scientists in other agencies and organizations to identify research needs Developing or assisting in the development of grant proposals to obtain funding or other resources needed to advance the SJV's understanding of landscape and bird resources of the SJV Region. Must be a U.S. Citizen or National Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service Resume and supporting documents (See How To Apply) Suitability for employment, as determined by background investigation Official U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service uniform may be required May be required to successfully complete a probationary period Must possess and maintain a valid State driver's license prior to operating Government-owned vehicles Must have a professional working proficiency in Spanish Qualifications Only experience and education obtained by November 2, 2018, will be considered. SELECTIVE PLACEMENT FACTOR: Applicants must have a professional working proficiency in Spanish. BASIC EDUCATION REQUIREMENT: A. Must possess a Bachelor's Degree with a major in a biological science that includes the following course work: 1) at least 9 semester hours in such wildlife subjects as mammalogy, ornithology, animal ecology, wildlife management, or research courses in the field of wildlife biology; AND 2) at least 12 semester hours in zoology in such subjects as general zoology, invertebrate zoology, vertebrate zoology, comparative anatomy, physiology, genetics, ecology, cellular biology, parasitology, entomology, or research courses in such subjects; AND 3) at least 9 semester hours in botany or the related plant sciences. Please Note: If you select this response, please provide transcripts to show how you meet this requirement. OR B. Must have a combination of education and experience that is equivalent to a major in a biological science. This combination includes 1) at least 9 semester hours in wildlife subjects as described in "A" above; AND 2) 12 semester hours in zoology subjects as described in "A" above; AND 3) 9 semester hours in botany as described in "A" above. Please Note: If you select this response, you must submit transcripts to show how you meet the education requirement. ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATION: Must have one year of professional experience equivalent to the GS-11 level in the Federal service. Specialized experience includes: leading the development of a comprehensive conservation science and monitoring program in support of bird or natural resource conservation, including implementation, monitoring, and evaluation; building partnerships and relationships to increase collaboration and support for bird and habitat conservation, monitoring, and management; expertise in bird identification, bird survey/monitoring techniques, and bird ecology and natural history in arid landscapes, and applying this knowledge in the field. Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience. Education PROOF OF EDUCATION: All applicants who are using education or a combination of education and experience to qualify must submit copies of official or unofficial transcripts which include grades, credit hours earned, major(s), grade point average or class ranking, institution name, and student name. If any required coursework is not easily recognizable on transcripts, or if you believe a portion of a particular course can be credited toward meeting an educational requirement, you must also provide a memorandum on letterhead from the institution's registrar, dean, or other appropriate official stating the percentage of the course that should be considered to meet the requirement and the equivalent number of units. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable; however, if you are selected for the position, you will be required to produce the original official transcripts. PASS/FAIL COURSES: If more than 10 percent of your undergraduate course work (credit hours) were taken on a pass/fail basis, your claim of superior academic achievement must be based upon class standing or membership in an honor society. GRADUATE EDUCATION: One academic year of graduate education is considered to be the number of credits hours your graduate school has determined to represent one academic year of full-time study. Such study may have been performed on a full-time or part-time basis. If you cannot obtain your graduate school's definition of one year of graduate study, 18 semester hours (or 27 quarter hours) should be considered as satisfying the requirement for one year of full-time graduate study. FOREIGN EDUCATION: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education. For further information, visit: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html To apply for this position, you must submit a complete Application Package which includes: Resume or Application. At a minimum, your resume MUST contain job title (include job series and grade, if federal), duties, starting and ending dates (month and year), hours worked per week, and salary. USAJOBS has a template to ensure a complete resume. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YX7o1PBoFk Other supporting documents: Cover Letter, optional Official or unofficial College Transcript(s), if the position has education requirements, or if you are using your education to qualify. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. A copy of your official transcripts will be required if you are selected. If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit: http://http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html Veterans' Preference documentation, if applicable (e.g., DD-214 Member Copy 4 showing type of discharge/character of service, SF-15 Form and related documentation, VA letter, etc.) If applicable, documentation/proof that you are eligible Career Transition Assistance Program/Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program documentation, if applicable (e.g., Certification of Expected Separation, Reduction-In-Force Separation Notice, or Notice of Proposed Removal; SF-50 that documents the RIF separation action; and most recent performance appraisal.) Review the Appointment Eligibility Criteria: The eligibility section of the application process is designed to allow you to choose how you wish to be considered for this vacancy announcement. You will ONLY be considered for the appointment eligibilities that you selected. You must provide proof of your eligibility as required by appointment eligibility to be considered. Resume or Application. At a minimum, your resume MUST contain job title (include job series and grade, if federal), duties, starting and ending dates (month/day/year), hours worked per week, and salary. USAJOBS has a template to ensure a complete resume. You must also complete the online application and assessment questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below. DEADLINE DATE: A complete application package must be received by 11:59 PM (EST) on 11/02/2018 to receive consideration. To begin, click Apply to access the online application. You will need to be logged into your USAJOBS account to apply. If you do not have a USAJOBS account, you will need to create one before beginning the application. Follow the prompts to select your resume and/or other supporting documents to be included with your application package. You will have the opportunity to upload additional documents to include in your application before it is received. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process. After acknowledging you have reviewed your application package, complete the Include Personal Information section as you deem appropriate and click to continue with the application process. You will be taken to the online application which you must complete in order to apply for the position. Complete the online application, verify the required documentation is included with your application package, and submit the application. You will be considered for all eligibilities for which you select "yes" and submit the required documents and supporting documentation (e.g. DD 214, Schedule A letter, etc.). The supporting documentation you submit will be used to determine your eligibility. Please review the list of documentation provided in the eligibilities language to ensure you provide the appropriate information. Please note, your eligibility will be based solely on the selections you have indicated "yes" in this section. You must provide the supporting documentation to support your claim to be considered. You may choose more than one eligibilities in this section. To view the assessment questionnaire, click here: https://apply.usastaffing.gov/ViewQuestionnaire/10338450 To verify the status of your application, log into your USAJOBS account (https://my.usajobs.gov/Account/Login), all of your applications will appear on the Welcome screen. The Application Status will appear along with the date your application was last updated. For information on what each Application Status means, visit: https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/how-to/application/status/.
  13. Good article: https://www.hcn.org/articles/birds-egged-on-by-industry-lobbyists-interior-department-weakens-bird-protections/print_view
  14. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council. Does the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA). include the take of protected bird species as a result of otherwise lawful activity? No one knows. The statute is silent on the subject. The proponents of this 100-year old law were concerned about indiscriminate slaughter of birds for their plumes, used by the millinery trade. They were also concerned about harvest limits on game birds. In short, they were not thinking about incidental take. In the early 1990s, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) became concerned about the impact of incidental take on migratory birds but knowing that there was legal uncertainty, never moved to formally regulate incidental take. Instead, the USFWS engaged with certain industries to encourage them to adopt practices to reduce the extent of incidental take. The first of these efforts was the Avian Power Line Interaction Committee. Together, the industry and the USFWS compiled a set of best practices and the USFWS gave industry members time to implement those practices. Only if a company refused to implement those practices would the USFWS sue under the MBTA. The companies, for their part, came to the table because they faced the same uncertainty - what if the courts would hold them liable for incidental take? Over time, some industries were more cooperative than others. In some cases, the USFWS imposed penalties for incidental take and these cases reached the federal courts. Some of the courts decided that the MBTA covers incidental take. Some courts decided to the contrary. And there things stand, ready for a Supreme Court show-down. (Editorial note: yes, you may and probably should take a drink or two as the enormity of that inevitable train wreck crosses your mind). During the second Obama term, some in DOI made an attempt to incorporate the incidental take policy into formal regulation, going so far as to issue a notice of intent to publish a programmatic environmental impact statement and a regulation defining take to include incidental take. However, the White House apparently did not support this effort and it never came to fruition. At the same time, some industries began pushing back. In particular, Duke Energy, which had been fined $1million and placed on five years probation for killing birds at a wind energy facility, persuaded Congress to include in an appropriations bill a provision to prohibit the USFWS from prosecuting incidental take. Worse, the company and its industry allies succeeded in persuading a South Carolina congressman to sponsor a free-standing bill to amend the MBTA to exclude incidental take from criminal liability (both efforts failed). Meanwhile, back at the Department of the Interior, the Office of the Solicitor was persuaded at the 11 & 11/12th hour of the Obama Administration (10 January 2017) to issue an "M-Opinion" stating that the MBTA does cover incidental take. Which the new Administration promptly withdrew (20 January 2017). And then on 22 December 2017 issued a new M-Opinion stating that the MBTA dos not cover incidental take. Several conservation organizations and eight states filed suit challenging that last M-Opinion. (all are still in the earliest stages; watch for updates). And now it has come to this. For months, it has been rumored that the USFWS would propose a formal regulation stating that the MBTA does not cover incidental take. A regulation is much, much hard to reverse than is an M-Opinion. Well, rumor no more. The USFWS is about to propose a formal regulation to codify its current position that incidental take is not covered. In the fall semi-annual regulatory agenda published on 17 October 2018, the USFWS list of regulatory matters included this entry: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes to establish regulations that define the scope of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA or Act) as it applies to conduct resulting in the injury or death of migratory birds protected by the Act. This rule would codify the legal opinion in the Department of the Interior Solicitor’s Opinion M-37050 that incidental take resulting from an otherwise lawful activity is not prohibited under the MBTA. Worser and worser. The USFWS had a flabby carrot and a very small stick to work with, given the legal uncertainty about incidental take, but the way things are going, it is likely to lose even that leverage. Permanently.
  15. Ellen Paul

    AOS renewal notice

    Dear Ellen, Thank you for being a part of the American Ornithological Society in 2018 – it has been a great year together. We grew our membership by 10% to a community of over 2900 diverse individuals from all over the globe. We made great strides in fostering the next generation of ornithologists with a focus on engaging and funding women and underrepresented minorities. Both The Auk and The Condor are now ranked in the top three ornithological journals worldwide, and in 2019 we will expand the global reach of our science through a new publishing partnership with Oxford University Press. The AOS is looking forward to an exciting year ahead, and we hope you will renew your membership in the society in 2019. Your current AOS membership will expire on 31 December 2018. Supporting your society is supporting your discipline. It also empowers the AOS to support you – in your research, professional development, networking, and career pursuits. We continue to expand our membership benefits and look for opportunities to improve the ways in which we serve you. By renewing now, you can be sure to take advantage of your member discount when registration opens on 15 October for our 2019 meeting in Anchorage, Alaska. NEW this year! As a corresponding author, enjoy no author page charges to publish standard articles in The Auk and The Condor. Renewing online via the Member Portal is fast and easy—there is even an option to have your membership automatically renew in the future. [Please note: Since you hold membership(s) in other OSNA societies, you will receive a similar note from OSNA regarding the renewal process.] As you renew this year, we ask that you read and agree to abide by the AOS Code of Professional Conduct. By committing to these guidelines and best practices for professional behavior we, as a Society, can more effectively fulfill our mission to advance the scientific understanding and conservation of birds and to enrich ornithology as a profession. We are here to help. If you have any questions or need help logging into your Member Portal account, contact Scott Gillihan, OSNA Membership Manager, at OSNAmembers@gmail.com or 312-883-4670. Thank you for your continued membership in the American Ornithological Society! Sincerely, Kathy Martin, President Follow AOS on Social Media! Stay Connected! AOS Website, AmericanOrnithology.org AOS News (sign up!) AOS History of Ornithology (sign up!) AOS Social Weekly Review (sign up!) AOS Publications Website, AmericanOrnithologyPubs.org Auk Twitter, @AukJournal (follow) Condor Twitter, @CondorJournal (follow) AOS Journals Blog (sign up!) AOS Journals Newsletter (sign up!)
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