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  • Grassland Bird Technicians

    Guest Dana Ripper
    • Employer: Missouri River Bird Observatory
      Location: Missouri
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 02/29/2024
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    The Missouri River Bird Observatory (MRBO) seeks 3-4 Grassland Bird Technicians for line-transect surveys May 1st–July 15th, 2023. MRBO’s grasslands project is entirely conservation-focused and target species include some of the most precipitously declining birds in North America such as Eastern Meadowlark, Henslow’s Sparrow, and Grasshopper Sparrow. This position provides the opportunity to contribute significantly to grassland bird conservation and habitat management in the state of Missouri.

    After a three-day training period, technicians will conduct surveys documenting all bird species by sight and sound. Surveys involve covering more than 70,000 acres on 70+ public and private grasslands throughout Missouri, from the Grand River Grasslands in northern Missouri through the Upper Osage Grasslands and down to Joplin.

    All survey data are collected in ESRI Field Maps with mobile devices. Technicians should expect walking 5-10 miles a day in uneven terrain with typical grassland vegetation. Technicians must be able to work in the wide range of temperatures and humidity conditions of the region.

    If time allows, at various points in the season technicians may also be asked to work for a few days on other MRBO field projects, such as forest bird surveys, or assist with education and outreach events.

    •Excellent bird ID by sight and sound, with particularly proficiency in grassland bird ID.
    • A strong conservation and inclusivity ethic.
    •Positive and professional demeanor with ability to interact with agency staff, private landowners, other partners, and general public.
    •Flexibility to plan and work within changing logistics and in cooperation with a small group. •Excellent physical condition, stamina, and ability to handle hot and humid weather, ticks, chiggers, and occasional encounters with cattle.
    •A personal vehicle is required.

    The grassland bird breeding season is a short but intense field season where at least 6 days/week of work are needed. Off-days are usually due to weather and advance planning of days off is not typical, particularly in the first few weeks of the season. Compensation is $2000-2250/month depending on experience.

    Due to survey sites occurring across a wide geography, travel will be extremely frequent; at times you will be in a different place every night. Camping may be required while on the road. Use of your own camping gear would be preferred but MRBO can supply some items. Lodging at Airbnbs and motels, as well as camping costs, will be paid in advance by MRBO or reimbursed. Personal vehicle use will be reimbursed at the Missouri state rate of $0.655/mile.

    Please send a letter of interest, resume, and contact information for three references to ethan.duke@mrbo.org AND dana.ripper@mrbo.org. Please address your qualifications as listed above. Deadline is February 29th, 2024 but applications will be reviewed as they are received and interviews scheduled accordingly. If suitable candidates are found, the positions will be filled on or before March 31st.

    MRBO values diversity of all kinds and is committed to building a diverse and inclusive workplace where we all learn from each other. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people with diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and culture. Individuals from non-traditional backgrounds, historically marginalized, or underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

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