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  • Fall Lead Owl Bander at Whitefish Point Bird Observatory

    Michigan Audubon
    • Employer: Michigan Audubon
      Location: Paradise, Michigan
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 06/10/2022
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Employer: Michigan Audubon
    Reports to: President & CEO and Banding Permit Holder
    Location: Paradise, Michigan
    Dates of employment: September 10–November 7
    Classification: Full-time, temporary 
    Compensation: Approximately $2,000–$3,000/season, DOE. Includes shared housing


    Whitefish Point Bird Observatory, located in the eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan, is seeking a Lead Owl Bander from September 10 through November 7, 2022. The fall season Lead Owl Bander conducts nightly owl banding (dusk through dawn) and records data for the research program at Michigan Audubon. The field staff of WPBO represent and share Michigan Audubon’s mission of connecting birds and people for the benefit of both through conservation, education, and research. Whitefish Point is a world-renowned site for avian migration monitoring, with more diversity in owl species banded than any other site in North America. Owl species banded in the past include Northern Saw-whet, Boreal, Long-eared, Barred, Great Gray, Great Horned, and Northern Hawk Owls. To learn more about WPBO, a program of Michigan Audubon, please visit www.wpbo.org.

    Primary duties of the Lead Owl Bander include opening and closing nets, net checks, bird banding, and recording information on owls with the help of the Assistant Owl Bander. The LOB also contributes to written content by writing blogs and an end-of-season, narrative report for our member magazine, the Jack Pine Warbler. 

    Performance Expectations

    • Perform assigned duties 7 days per week except during periods of rain, snow, high winds, or lightning. 
    • Conduct owl banding program using the WPBO standardized owl banding methodology.
    • Ensure all activities abide by the provisions required by all relevant permits, including those of the USGS Bird Banding Laboratory, and those of the Research and Monitoring Special Use Permit provided by Seney National Wildlife Refuge.
    • Maintain organized records and notes with attention to detail, accurately collecting data and recording field notes. 
    • Check in with project supervisors on a regular basis. 
    • Work in all non-hazardous weather conditions. Practice great caution with severe weather, such as thunderstorms, when you may be at risk of exposure to lightning. 
    • Perform with a minimum of supervision and work cooperatively with a wide range of people.
    • Reinforce positive relationships with excellent communication and a friendly, positive attitude while engaging the public.
    • Communicate with the public of all ages in a professional manner regarding sensitive conservation issues.
    • Serve as a professional, courteous, communicative, and exemplary ambassador for Michigan Audubon and its mission, “Connecting birds and people for the benefit of both through conservation, education, and research efforts in the state of Michigan.”


    • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age, hold a current, valid driver’s license, and a personal vehicle for transportation. 
    • Eligible for work in the United States and willing to undergo a background check.
    • Previous mist-netting and bird banding experience is required (2+ field seasons preferred).
    • Education and/or prior field experience in the fields of biological, zoological, environmental, or ecological studies are helpful, but not required, for this position. 
    • Ability to work independently with a positive attitude, flexibility, and strong communication skills. 

    How to Apply
    To apply, please submit via email a cover letter, resume, and three references to office@michiganaudubon.org with the subject “WPBO Fall Lead Owl Bander application.” Applications will be accepted until filled. Early applications encouraged and preferred for priority consideration by June 10, 2022. To learn more, please visit www.wpbo.org.

    F2022 _ LOB _ Job Posting.pdf

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