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  • King rail field assistants

    • Employer: East Carolina University
      Location: Mackay Island NWR, coastal North Carolina
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 02/21/2019
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Highly motivated VOLUNTEER FIELD ASSISTANTS (3 positions) sought for research on the ecology and behavior of breeding king rails in wetlands in and around Mackay Island NWR on the North Carolina-Virginia border http://www.fws.gov/mackayisland/ Duties include conducting callback surveys to locate breeding rails, nest finding (wading), nest monitoring, catching, sampling and banding adults and chicks. Candidates will be required to collect data and observations and enter these into a database. Training will be provided. These positions require physically demanding work at varying times of day, including early morning start times and a non-traditional work week. Applicants should expect to spend long hours wading through water, mud and thick marsh vegetation under hot, humid conditions. Some night work may also be necessary. Three 10- to 12-week positions are available with staggered start dates. May through June availability required. April availability preferred, but dates negotiable prior to starting. Comfortable refuge housing with basic amenities and utilities will be provided free of charge.


    Required: Candidates should have or be working towards a B.S. in biology, ecology, wildlife science, or a related field. Hard working with a positive attitude, sense of humor, and an interest in wetland bird ecology a must! Ability to follow direction and to work both independently and with a team. Possess good organizational and data recording skills. Ability to lift 50 pounds above one’s head. Valid driver’s license and clean driving record. Must be comfortable working around water, in the presence of snakes and biting insects.

    Preferred: Prior experience with marsh birds, mistnetting, bird handling, and nest-finding, particularly in wetlands. Prior experience identifying avian vocalizations or conducting playback trials. Experience working in difficult terrain and under uncomfortable field conditions. Experience paddling a kayak. Own vehicle preferred, but not required (please indicate upon application). Ability to operate a 4-wheel drive truck an asset.


    Volunteer, shared refuge housing provided free of charge. Pending funding, a modest stipend may be available for travel expenses.  

    To Apply:

    Candidates should send a cover letter with 1. dates of availability, 2. description of qualifications, 3. reason for interest in the position, 4. future goals, and 5. state whether you have a clean driver’s license and vehicle. Provide a resume including the contact information for three referees. Please combine in a single file and send electronically to SUSAN McRAE at East Carolina University, EM: mcraes AT ecu DOT edu. Please use the following subject line: KING RAIL ASSISTANTS. Review of candidates will begin February 15th, 2019, and continue until the positions are filled. Phone: (252) 328-6515

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