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11 Jan 2022

Environment Ecological Monitoring Soil and Vegetation Field Lead (Reno, Nevada)

Ecological Monitoring Soil and Vegetation Field Lead – Posted by Recrutiment Reno, Nevada, United States

Job Description

The Great Basin Institute is an interdisciplinary field studies organization that promotes environmental research, education, and service through the west. The Institute’s mission is to advance applied science and ecological literacy through community engagement and agency partnerships, supporting national parks, forest, open spaces and public lands.

The Ecological Monitoring Program at GBI serves as an excellent professional development opportunity for natural resource professionals looking for experience in botanical, soil, and rangeland surveys. This Program is a component of our well-established Research Associate Program, which focuses on the conservation and management of natural, cultural, and recreation resources in the Intermountain West while providing emerging professionals opportunities to begin or enhance their careers.

GBI’s Ecological Monitoring Program is dedicated to providing college graduates and emerging professionals with hands-on survey, inventory, monitoring, and reporting experience in natural resource management. Extensive training and technical field skills development provides employees a unique opportunity to obtain valuable experience in executing monitoring protocols that will increase their employment success.

In one component of the Program, participants implement the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Assessment, Inventory, and Monitoring (AIM) strategy for terrestrial systems, targeted at collecting standardized ecological information and long-term vegetation data at multiple scales across western BLM districts. In some instances participants may perform supplemental protocols such as Habitat Assessment Framework (HAF) (to inform conservation approaches for sage-grouse). Supplemental sampling may also include collecting data on forb diversity, annual production and pollinators, among other indicators.

This video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LciTBPG2-Ss&feature=youtu.be) highlights the national BLM AIM strategy for landscape-scale data capture across western states.

Description:
GBI is recruiting Ecological Monitoring Soils and Vegetation Field Leads to work with GBI and BLM staff. Each Field Lead will coordinate a field crew (one Lead will supervise two Technicians) to characterize vegetation using the terrestrial AIM core methods. In some instances, Habitat Assessment Framework (HAF), and/or other supplemental protocols will be performed, for which training will be provided. Aside from core AIM sampling, any supplemental protocols implemented will vary by location.

Duties include following established field protocols to perform vegetation sampling and field data collection at new and existing sampling plots. Data will be used by resource specialists and land managers to inform decisions regarding land management at various temporal and spatial scales. During field work, car camping for 7 night “hitches” in remote locations will typically be required.

Depending on performance and completion of work term this position can qualify for Public Lands Corps (PLC) status given that the applicant is 30 years old or younger at the time of GBI employment. This certificate allows for non-competitive status for future federal job applications and will last two years from the end of GBI employment.

Field work will include:
• Maintaining safety awareness and practices;
• Extensive 4×4 driving on unmaintained roads;
• Navigating off-trail to sampling sites;
• Establishing sampling plots and transects;
• Identifying and describing soil horizons to help verify ecological site descriptions (ESDs);
• Collecting vegetation data (including species inventory, forb diversity, species abundance, sagebrush shape, foliar cover, canopy gap, and herbaceous and woody heights);
• Taking photo-points.

Additional duties include:
• Regular communication with GBI support staff and agency staff;
• Participation in GBI and agency trainings;
• Entering data into both Field Maps and Survey 123 software;
• Identifying plants to species using dichotomous keys; and
• Employing extensive QA/QC data checks.

Leadership:
• Supporting and managing a field crew;
• Coordinating field logistics and scheduling; and
• Report writing and completing administrative paperwork

Contract Timeline:
Locations and timelines listed below are tentative, some with potential for extension. Crews will be based out of either the Las Vegas or Reno GBI Offices but work in the following BLM Field Office (FO’s) areas:

California:

Northern California Project:
• Redding, Applegate and Eagle Lake Field Offices
• April 4th – September 30th
• 3-person soils and vegetation monitoring crew
Bishop Project:
• Bishop Field Office
• April 4th – September 2nd
• 3-person soils and vegetation monitoring crew

Nevada:

Nevada Statewide Project:
• Battle Mountain, Carson City, Elko, and Winnemucca District Offices
• April 4th -August 12th
• 3-person soils and vegetation monitoring crew

Elko ESR Project:
• Elko District Office
• April 4th -July 22nd
• 3-person vegetation monitoring crew with ~33% of points requiring soil sampling

Winnemucca ESR Project:
• Winnemucca District Office
• April 4th-August 5th
• 3-person vegetation monitoring crew with ~33% of points requiring soil sampling

Compensation:
Total approximate compensation: $3358.30/month before taxes (approximate hourly equivalent: $20.99), plus health insurance (monthly premiums fully paid by GBI), end of season bonus, and paid time off.

Breakdown:

• $1,408 biweekly salary
• $150 bi-weekly housing stipend*
• $15 per diem for every night camped in the field (up to 7 units in an 8 day work week)
• $32.30/month cell phone stipend
• Affordable Care Act Compliant Health insurance including vision and dental provided at no cost to the employee starting the first day of the month following employment start date.
• Paid federal holidays
• Paid personal time off (amount dependent on contract length)

*Housing stipend is untaxed and can be used at the discretion of the applicant. Housing is not provided. Applicants must be able to provide their own lodging.

Qualifications:
• Leadership experience, including supervising field crews and managing projects simultaneously.

• Experience, education, or a combination of both in botany and/or range management to meet the following(Crew Leads should have education and experience with plants identification):

• Bachelor’s degree in botany, biology, ecology, or rangeland ecology or other natural resources.
• At least 9 semester hours in plant or biological sciences.

AND/OR

• Bachelor’s degree in plant or soil science or similar with at least 9 semester hours in soils or a minimum of 1 year of field data collection describing soils. Any of the 4 certifications from the Soil Science Society of America may substitute for education or experience.

*Some Projects require a relevant Bachelor’s Degree.

Technical requirements:
• Experience identifying plants in the field and using a dichotomous key;
• Experience conducting plant surveys using various monitoring protocols, including standard rangeland monitoring protocols, photo plots, and site observations;
• Experience in describing and identifying soil horizons; familiarity with NRCS soils databases and Ecological Site Descriptions concepts preferred;
• Experience conducting plant surveys using various monitoring protocols, photo plots, and site observations;
• Experience with data entry and management;
• Experience with technical writing and/or producing written project summary reports;
• Ability to read, interpret and navigate using topographic maps;
• Experience safely operating 4WD trucks on paved and unpaved roads, often in remote areas on unimproved roads;
• Experience navigating and collecting coordinates with hand-held GPS units;
• Experience creating maps and performing basic functions with GIS software (ArcMap);
• Experience with Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Access); and
• Experience with Field Maps, Survey 123, and ArcGIS Online.

Additional requirements:
• Willingness and ability to work in a fast-paced, dynamic setting, and to consistently enact high performance standards and a strong work and team ethic in support of the goals and objectives of the AIM program and the mission of GBI;
• Willingness to mentor and foster professional development for members of your crew;
• Valid, state-issued driver’s license and clean driving record;
• Familiarity with native and invasive plants of the sampling area and associated natural resource issues preferred;
• Ability to work productively as part of a team to accomplish mutual goals;
• Ability to work independently;
• Ability to communicate effectively with team members, agency staff, and a diverse public;
• Ability to accurately complete administrative tasks on time i.e. timesheet, paperwork, etc;
• Excellent organizational skills;
• Familiarity with best practices for field safety and Leave No Trace principles;
• Experience in and willingness to spend up to seven consecutive nights camping with no amenities in remote locations;
• Willingness to work irregular hours (e.g., early mornings, late nights); and
• Ability to work in harsh and rapidly changing environments, work in all types of weather conditions, traverse uneven terrain, carry upwards of 40 pounds in a backpack, and otherwise maintain good physical condition.
Please indicate your availability and location/project preferences in your cover letter when applying. Application review will continue until all positions are filled. We encourage applying early to gain the best chance of getting top-choice locations. Only qualified candidates will be contacted.

As part of Great Basin Institute’s Covid-19 Vaccination Policy, all employees are required to receive and provide proof of a full course of COVID-19 vaccine prior to the first day of employment, unless a medical or religious exemption is submitted and approved. All employees covered by this policy are required to be fully vaccinated as a term and condition of employment at Great Basin Institute. Employees are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after completing primary vaccination with a COVID-19 vaccine, with, if applicable, at least the minimum recommended interval between doses.

How to Apply

Please apply online at: https://www.vscyberhosting.com/greatbasin/careers.aspx?rf=ADVENTUREJOBS&req=2021-AIM-015

Job Categories: Seasonal. Job Types: Environment.

Job expires in 49 days.

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