Summary: American Conservation Experience (ACE), a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with New River Gorge National River (NERI) in West Virginia is seeking TWO Forest Health Protection Interns to dedicate 12 weeks serving directly with NERI Natural Resource Management staff with resource conservation through forest pests management for hemlock woolly adelgid. These opportunities are intended for enthusiastic, emerging professionals with a background in ecology, botany, biology, invasive species management, forestry or natural resource management who possess a deep interest in advancing their career goals through determination and commitment to the New River Gorge National Rivers' professional staff and resources.
Start Date: October 2, 2017
End Date: December 23, 2017
* 12-week commitment required *
Location: New River Gorge National River, Glen Jean, West Virginia.
New River Gorge National River (NERI) is located in southern West Virginia and encompasses 70,000 acres and 53 miles of one of the oldest rivers on the continent. NERI is home to a vast array of natural and cultural resources. Renowned for its recreational opportunities, NERI host miles of hiking and biking trails, premiere white water rafting, rock climbing, fishing, hunting, bird watching, and camping.
Park staff also manages nearby Bluestone National Scenic River (BLUE) and Gauley River National Recreation Area (GARI). BLUE protects 10.5 miles of free flowing river and offers a rich variety of natural resources and history along the Bluestone Turnpike Trail. GARI protects 25 miles of the Gauley River and 6 miles of Meadow River. Known for its multiple class V rapids, GARI is one of the most adventurous rivers in the east.
Project Website: For more information about the park, please visit their website at: https://www.nps.gov/neri/index.htm, https://www.nps.gov/blue/index.htm, https://www.nps.gov/gari/index.htm. For more information regarding American Conservation Experience: http://www.usaconservation.org/.
Compensation: The ACE intern will be expected to serve 40 hours/week and receive a living allowance of $250/week. The intern will have use of a government vehicle for project-related travel, though a personal vehicle is required for time off and transportation to/from the park. Housing is provided at no cost to the intern by the park and consists of a furnished house located 6 miles from park headquarters and 13 miles to the nearest grocery store. Absolutely no pets are permitted in government housing.
Project Background: New River Gorge is home to 1,400 species of plants and 40 different vegetation communities, making it the most botanically diverse river gorge in the central and southern Appalachians. Invasive species threaten these important resources and resource managers at NERI focus on the hemlock woolly adelgid, emerald ash borer, and exotic invasive plants including: Japanese knotweed, kudzu, tree-of-heaven, Japanese barberry, autumn olive, multiflora rose, Japanese and bush honeysuckles, wineberry, etc.
Position Description: Since 2006 NERI has been managing hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) by insecticides, biocontrols, and monitoring. The Forest Health Protection interns will help conserve hemlock trees in globally rare vegetation communities and ecologically significant locations in NERI and GARI by applying insecticides to individual trees. Efficacy of insecticide treatments will be monitored, data entered, and analyses compiled. Annual long term hemlock ecosystem monitoring will also be completed at 36 plots that were established 18 years ago and measure tree health variables and HWA infestation rates.The intern will also assist with a research project studying the effects of imidacloprid (insecticide) on amphibian and invertebrate populations. HWA biocontrol predatory beetle monitoring will also be conducted and entered into a region wide database.
Training: Safety and pesticide training will be provided and the intern will be registered as a technician with the state of West Virginia. Cross training opportunities are encouraged and could include: amphibian surveys, bird netting, mine portal surveys for bats, electrofishing, water quality collection and analyses, aquatic invertebrate sampling, interpretation and public education.
To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with three professional references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on the ACE website: usaconservation.org
NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This posting may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact ACE EPIC Program Manager, Peter Woodruff at (801) 989-7069 or email@example.com.
Qualifications: Applicants for the position must hold or be pursuing a minimum of a bachelor's degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as ecology, botany, forestry, biology, natural resources management, environmental science, or related disciplines.
US Citizens and Permanent Residents only
Between the ages of 18 and 35
Must have a valid driver's license; clean driving record and the ability to provide documentation
A personal vehicle is required for transportation to/from the park
English proficiency required
Effective communication skills
Ability to safely follow procedures used in the field
Must be able and willing to serve outdoors, in varying weather conditions and capable of participating in physical labor
Ability and willingness to undergo a federal criminal background check is required
Desire to learn and apply new concepts
Ability to collaborate well with others and serve individually
Experience with hand tools and power drill
Plant identification skills including taxonomy and use of dichotomous key
The interns must be willing to represent ACE and the partner organization in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. Drug users should not consider applying, as ACE reserves the right to require drug testing.