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    Boat Operator and Piping Plover Technician

    • Employer: Virginia Tech
      Location: Fire Island, New York
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 05/01/2019
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Job description: Mid April to August 31, 2019. Monitoring the response of Piping Plovers (Charadrius melodus) and their invertebrate prey to habitat created by Hurricane Sandy. The boat captain will be working with field technicians to improve conservations efforts for Northeast Atlantic population of Piping Plovers. This project is just one of multiple shorebird projects based at Virginia Tech. Please see our project webpage http://vtshorebirds.fishwild.vt.edu/ for more information about shorebird conservation at Virginia Tech.

    Primary responsibility is marine navigation in the Great South Bay of Long Island, NY, including daily transport of field technicians to barrier island study sites, boat trailering, and boat maintenance. Other responsibilities include trapping, banding and resighting adult Piping Plovers, nest searching and monitoring, invertebrate collection and identification, capturing, banding and resighting Piping Plover chicks, daily trailering of UTVs, daily driving of 4x4 vehicles and driving ATVs on the beach, working closely with land management agencies and the Fish and Wildlife Service, data organization and management.

    Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Science, Biology, Environmental Science, or a related field. Experience navigating in the Intracoastal Waterway, navigating by GPS, boating in shallow waters and foggy conditions in a small out-board motor boat, and repairing and maintaining motor boats. 

    Resighting color bands is an essential job function. Candidates should be able to distinguish colors at a distance.

    Preference for candidate with prior experience as a field technician or research assistant and experience with trailering, driving 4x4 vehicles and ATVS in sand. Avian capture methods and handling techniques, color band resighting, bird banding, and shorebird identification are preferred, but training will be provided. Candidates must be able to work was part of team and independently, and keep a positive attitude through long field days (up to 12 hours/day and 6 days/week) in a variety of field conditions. Candidates should be in good physical condition, as the job requires walking 5–10 miles in sand while carrying a spotting scope and other research equipment on a daily basis.

    Salary: 640/week + free housing 

    Please send cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references (in ONE document, formatted as LastName_FirstName_BoatOperator2019) to Katie Walker at li.pipingplover@gmail.com. Positions will remain open until filled.

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