The Area Bear Biologist will be hired to provide human-bear conflict resolution, education, and stakeholder engagement in northeast and central Florida. This position is one of five Area Bear Biologists located in key locations across the state. The position will work as part of a team with staff from other Sections and Divisions to respond to public requests for assistance with human-bear conflicts, which will include site visits to provide technical assistance and assess causes of conflicts, trapping, immobilizing and either relocating or euthanizing bears, and retrieving biological information from and disposing of carcasses of dead bears. The position will coordinate the activities of multiple Bear Response Contractors, manage a bear deterrent loaner equipment program for the public, manage bear traps and other equipment for agency use, and enter field data on bears collected in their area of responsibility into an agency-wide human-wildlife conflict database. The position will actively seek out and provide education and outreach opportunities to partner agencies, local governments, businesses, and residents at public events, meetings, schools, and other venues. The position will be expected to maintain communications and relationships with local stakeholders. The position will participate as the lead agency representative on the North Bear Stakeholder Group and maintain communications and relationships with local stakeholders. The position will responsible for tracking and reporting the activities of the Bear Stakeholder Group. The position will assist in the implementation of many strategies outlined in the 2012 Florida Black Bear Management Plan.
Level of Education & Experience:
Bachelor’s degree required, Master’s degree preferred, in environmental science, biology, or other natural resources field. Experience working with wildlife, preferably human-wildlife conflicts – 1 year required, 2+ years preferred. Experience with trapping and handling wildlife, preferably bears. Experience working with stakeholder groups. Related professional experience may substitute for a graduate degree or a graduate degree may substitute for some related professional experience. Proficiency in MS software applications - Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint required, Salesforce and SharePoint preferred.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
• Knowledge, skill and ability to design, coordinate, implement and evaluate a variety of effective human-wildlife conflict mitigation strategies and techniques.
• Ability to work well as part of a team to accomplish tasks.
• Ability to provide clear, timely, and effective updates to supervisor.
• Ability to communicate and manage high stress situations in a calm, organized, and professional manner.
• Ability to engage with stakeholders for effective conservation and management efforts.
• Ability to communicate effectively both in writing and orally to large and small groups with various educational backgrounds.
• Ability to work independently to plan, coordinate, and prioritize work assignments.
• Ability to represent agency viewpoint without personal conflicts.
• Ability to safely operate a motor vehicle, mechanical winch, bear trap, dart rifle, and shotgun, as well as safely pull trailers.
• Ability to be trained to use chemical immobilization methods and handle all aspects required to maintain a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency license.
• Ability to accurately collect and log field data.
• Ability to work in harsh outdoor conditions in high heat and humidity carrying heavy loads and exposed to biting insects and venomous snakes.
• Ability to work in a highly adaptive environment.
• Ability to work well with a variety of personalities and with persons of varied levels of wildlife conservation understanding.
• Skilled in the use of computers for word processing, information management, communications, and data management.
• Ability to work a flexible schedule, with potential night, weekend, and/or holiday work hours.
How to Apply:
Application packets must be submitted through the State of Florida’s official employment site (https://peoplefirst.myflorida.com/) and should include a cover letter and resume in addition to the state application.