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  • Piping Plover Research Technician


    Guest Chelsea Weithman
    • Employer: Virginia Tech
      Location: Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout National Seashores
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 01/20/2023
      Open Until Filled: No

    Job description: One technician is needed April 1 through September 30, 2023 to conduct research on Piping Plover breeding and migration ecology on the North Carolina Outer Banks. Position will be based out of Cape Hatteras National Seashore, with occasional work at Cape Lookout National Seashore. This project is one of multiple shorebird and seabird projects based at Virginia Tech, and there may be opportunities to assist in other regional research projects during the season. Please visit www.vtshorebirds.org for more information about shorebird research and conservation at Virginia Tech.

    Responsibilities: Surveying and resighting breeding and migratory Piping Plovers and other shorebirds on daily basis. Nest searching and monitoring for plovers and other beach nesting species. Capture and band plover adults and chicks. Conduct remote behavior observations and collect habitat metrics. Daily data entry and management using computer and GPS software. Boat operation and trailering. Work closely with land management agency personnel. Maintenance of field equipment.

    Required Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Science, Conservation Biology, Environmental Science, or a related field.

    Desired Qualifications: Prior experience as a field technician or research assistant. Experience and proficiency with color band resighting, shorebird identification, handling and banding, and boat operation is strongly preferred, although necessary training will be provided.

    Candidates must be able to work independently and as part of a small team with the crew leader and project manager, and keep a positive attitude through long field days (up to 12 hours/day and up to 6 days/week) in a variety of field conditions. Candidates should be capable of walking 5–10 miles in sand while carrying a spotting scope and other heavy research equipment, daily. Adaptability to changing work schedules within a day/week is ideal. Resighting color bands is an essential job function, and candidates must be able to distinguish colors at a distance. The position may require occasional use of boats in coastal waters and occasional travel to rustic cabin or camp settings.

    Compensation is $600/week. Crew housing will be provided, likely in or near Frisco, North Carolina. A driver’s license and clean driving record is required. Upon position offer, candidate will have to pass a background check. Please send cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references (in ONE pdf document, formatted as LastName_FirstName_2023) to Chelsea Weithman at nc.pipingplover@gmail.com. Last day to apply is January 20, 2023.




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