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  • Recent B.S. Graduate (class of May 2020): Avian Research Technician– Ecology, Modeling, and Disease

    • Employer: USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
      Location: USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12100 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20705
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 04/01/2020
      Open Until Filled: No

    Recent B.S. Graduate (class of May 2020): Avian Research Technician– Ecology, Modeling, and Disease


    The USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center is searching for a highly motivated and talented recent graduate (Bachelor of Science degree) to work on a suite of ecology, spatial modeling, and avian disease research.  The Patuxent Wildlife Research Center is a world-renowned research institution located within 30 minutes of Annapolis, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C.  This position will include a mix of office and field work focusing priority research topics such as state-endangered tern surveys and banding, avian influenza in wild birds, spatial modeling, cutting edge technology (thermal infrared cameras and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS, ie. drones)) to improve detection of waterbird species,  and more.

    Types of services required:  Examples of working tasks include conducting waterbird surveys for a restoration project in the Chesapeake Bay; banding and resighting terns for a mark-resight study; sampling waterfowl for avian influenza (swabbing and blood draws); modeling waterfowl distributions using ArcGIS, Python, and R; testing high definition and thermal infrared cameras on UAS platforms to determine efficacy in monitoring tern and egret species; and assisting in related duties including data entry, analysis, writing, video production, and editing of research papers.  Knowledge of ArcGIS, Microsoft Office, and statistical software such as R is highly beneficial. The candidate must be willing to assist with various projects other than those mentioned above, as this lab works on a variety of topics.

    Required expertise/skills: 

    The ideal candidate has a degree in Ecology, Wildlife Biology, Natural Resources, GIS, Statistics, or a related field.   The candidate must be highly motivated and able to work independently. Other desired skills include previous waterbird or wetland field experience, banding or tracking studies, spatial modeling, writing or editing scientific papers, and running basic statistics.  The most important qualification is a motivated individual who is interested in and capable of learning new things.

    Eligibility requirements:  To be eligible for a student contract position, applicants must have graduated within the past 12 months (eg., Dec 2019 or May 2020). Applicants will be required to show proof of their student status or recent graduation including official transcripts.  USGS employees, their spouses, and children are not eligible to participate in this program. 

    Description of working conditions:  Work will be performed both in the office environment located in Beltsville, Maryland and in the field. Field work may require transportation via mid-sized (20-40’) open boats.  Extreme weather (hot summers, cold winters, high winds) and uncomfortable environments (biting insects) may be encountered.  Extended periods of computer use will be required when not conducting field work.

    Compensation:  Hourly rate for this position is approximately $20.27.  Student contractors are paid only for hours worked (no holiday or leave benefits).  Rates for students include cost of self-employment taxes for social security and Medicare.  Student is responsible for all costs of transportation to and from the principal duty station location (ie. to the office or main field site).  The Government does not provide housing, meals or other living expenses while working at the principal duty station. 

    Approximate start date for the position is late August 2020.  This is a one year position (1920 hours).

    Principal Duty Station:  USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12100 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20705.

    How to apply:   Send the following to pwrc_intern@usgs.gov by April 1, 2020 with “Student Contract Application” in the Subject header:

    1)      Cover letter, resume and 3 references in a SINGLE Word or PDF document titled with your name (eg. JohnDoe.doc or JaneSmith.pdf). 

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