Title: Avian Field Technician - Point Counts - 10 Positions – Colorado and Utah
Location: Traveling through CO and UT
Compensation: $18.48-19.68/hr base rate (non-exempt, overtime eligible). Reimbursement for project-related travel and camping/lodging will also be provided.
Experience a season of adventure counting birds every morning with the Integrated Monitoring in Bird Conservation Regions (IMBCR) program! You’ll begin the season birding throughout the eastern plains of Colorado or the basin shrublands of Utah. As the season progresses, you’ll move up in elevation and experience the full range of habitats Colorado and Utah offer; from red rock and juniper foothills to open ponderosa, mixed conifer and aspen up to alpine tundra. Surveys occur on private and public land including U.S National Forest, Bureau of Land Management, and U.S. Park Service lands. From the Comanche National Grasslands to Rocky Mountain National Park, the rugged San Juan mountains to the lofty Wasatch front you’ll experience everything Colorado and Utah have to offer the adventure minded birder. Over 200 species regularly occur on surveys and you may even find some rocky mountain specialists like American Three-toed Woodpecker, Black Swift, Brown-capped Rosy-Finch, Canada Jay, Clark’s Nutcracker, Gunnison Sage-grouse, and White-tail Ptarmigan. In this position you will witness every rocky mountain sunrise and bird every day in some of the west’s most majestic landscapes!
Project Dates: ~ May 9 - July 15, 2023
Training: The first week of the field season will be an intensive group training session covering bird identification, point count & vegetation data protocols, GPS navigation, and data entry. You must pass a bird identification quiz at the end of training.
- After training, you’ll work and travel solo for the duration of the season (with opportunities to meet up with the crew every few weeks)
- Conduct point counts each morning, then drive to a new survey location each afternoon
- Hike long distances off trail and car camp daily, often without cell service or facilities
- Backpack up to 10 miles into remote survey locations
- Give a courtesy call to landowners prior to surveying on private property
- Enter data, update timesheets and worklogs, and research how you’ll access survey locations
- Check in frequently with your Crew Leader and be available by email/phone
- Work ~ 40-45 hrs per week (overtime pay after 40 hrs)
- 10 days on//4 days off or 5 days on//2 days off (depending on your preference and weather)
- Most field days will begin before dawn and end in the early afternoon
Equipment: You’ll need to provide your own binoculars, laptop computer (with working battery), and camping/backpacking gear. You may drive your own 4WD/AWD vehicle (and receive mileage reimbursement) or we’ll provide a rental vehicle (with cost of gas reimbursement)
- Ability to identify all bird species by sight/sound in Colorado and Utah
- You’re enthusiastic, physically fit, enjoy travel, and can work long hours in the field
- Willing to wake up before dawn, face hot/cold/rainy/windy weather, and encounter hazardous wildlife like rattlesnakes, bears, moose, and horses.
- You don’t mind solitude and are independent, organized, and responsible
- You have a driver’s license, proof of insurance, and experience driving 4WD vehicles
- Must pass a background and DMV screening and comply with the organization's current COVID 19 policy
Desired additional experience:
- Experience camping, long distance hiking, and navigating off-trail
- Prior field work experience, especially conducting avian point counts
- Experience using a GPS and navigation apps (such as Avenza, GAIA, onX, or Caltopo)
- A 4WD/AWD personal vehicle is highly desirable but not strictly required
Bird Conservancy is hiring for similar positions in several study areas including the Northern Great Plains, Southern Great Plains, Arizona/New Mexico, and Wyoming (see birdconservancy.org/careers). You can apply for multiple positions with a single application.
Email a cover letter, resume, and three references as a single PDF document to: IMBCRhiring@birdconservancy.org with “Last Name First Name IMBCR Technician” in the subject line and document file name. Please include in your cover letter:
- How you meet the qualifications (especially bird ID)
- Why you’re interested
- Which study areas you’d like to be considered for
- Where you saw the job posting
Applications will be reviewed as they are received and positions will be filled as suitable applicants are found. Bird Conservancy of the Rockies is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Visit the IMBCR Webpage (birdconservancy.org/imbcr) or check out this blog post from a previous technician (birdconservancy.org/off-the-beaten-track).