Invasive Species Support Members (2) - Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, AZ
ACE EPIC placements provide young adults with focused, hands-on opportunities to work alongside and under the guidance of agency mentors as they apply their knowledge of resource management on their path to becoming the next generation of resource and land managers.
Funding for ACE positions is provided by a federal program designed specifically for the employment of youth and young adults.
For more information about ACE, please visit: www.usaconservation.org.
Summary: American Conservation Experience (ACE), a non-profit conservation corps, in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is seeking (2) Invasive Species Support Members to contribute to invasive plant management duties alongside Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge Staff in southern Arizona. During this term, the ACE Members will provide support and assistance under the guidance and direction of FWS staff in the accomplishment of surveying, monitoring, removal, mapping, and educating the public.
Start Date: August 1, 2022
End Date: October 22, 2022
**12-week commitment required**
Location: Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, Sasabe, AZ
Located in southern Arizona, near the international border with Mexico, Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge was originally established in 1985 to preserve habitat to recover the endangered masked bobwhite quail. Originally a cattle ranch, the area has numerous invasive grass species that overtake the native grasses. Encompassing 118,000 acres, BANWR provides valuable habitat for desert grassland wildlife including pronghorn and the endangered masked bobwhite quail. Habitat management and restoration practices are utilized to restore native plant species to the landscape to benefit all wildlife species.
For more information about Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge and their resources, please visit:
Work Schedule: Duties will primarily be carried out Monday - Friday. Bi-weekly totals should not exceed 80 hours. A flexible work schedule may be required, which could involve work performed outside of normal work hours including on weekends and/or holidays. Time off may be granted, and requests should be directed to ACE and the FWS for approval.
Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute approximately 40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $400/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.
Housing: The ACE member will be accommodated in agency housing at no cost for the duration of the term. When residing in FWS provided housing or on FWS lands, strict adherence to site specific policies and/or regulations is required.
AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 450-hour AmeriCorps Education Award ($1,678.57) upon successful completion of service hours. Additional enrollment is required.
This individual placement is meant to facilitate personal growth and professional development and promotes exposure to land management agencies and networking with agency professionals. This could include gaining experience in a variety of conservation fields and/or shadowing different work groups.
Conducting invasive species surveys and management on Buenos Aires NWR will help the staff determine priority areas when it comes to habitat management/restoration efforts for the endangered masked bobwhite quail. It will also direct future efforts by showing which management methods are most effective.
The member will provide support and assistance under the guidance and direction of FWS staff in the accomplishment of:
- Invasive Plant Surveying/Baseline inventory: survey approximately 600 acres on Buenos Aires NWR for high priority invasive plant species to determine the full extent of populations. Data will be used for planning future remediation efforts.
- Invasive Plant Monitoring: monitor for successful invasive species eradication on treated lands to determine effectiveness of invasive species treatment techniques.
- Invasive Plant Management: Manually remove (where applicable) or apply herbicide to treat non-native invasive plants including Lehmann lovegrass, buffelgrass, etc.
- Use ESRI FieldMaps for ArcGIS on a mobile device to record surveillance, treatment and monitoring data.
- Operate 4WD government trucks and UTV's.
- Educate the public on invasive and native plant and animal species; excellent opportunities exist to engage and inform the local community on resource management issues at the Refuge.
Physical Requirements: This position requires physical exertion such as walking long distances over wet and rough surfaces while carrying up to 40 lbs.; bending, crouching, stooping, lifting or reaching. Hand and finger dexterity and physical coordination may involve fine and precise procedures, delicate adjustments or exact measurements.
Environmental Conditions/Hazards: The heat in southern Arizona can be intense. If you have a history of heat stroke, please consider whether this is a good position for you to apply for due to health risks. Daytime temperatures are generally between 85 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit, with temperatures occasionally rising over 100 degrees Fahrenheit even in the fall months. Local hazards include rattlesnakes and other reptiles, bees and other stinging or biting insects, sharp cacti and plants as well as rough, uneven terrain. Refuge is located along the international border with Mexico, which means there is the change to observe or experience situations that involve Border Patrol. Members are expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/members or resources.
Vehicle and Equipment Use/Safety: If a vehicle is required for the accomplishment of the duties, one will be provided by the FWS or ACE. Any tools required for the accomplishment of the duties will be provided by the FWS. Use of personal protective equipment (PPE), typically provided by the FWS, will be mandatory for any activity that requires it. Strict adherence to FWS and ACE equipment training, certification and safety protocols is required.
Qualifications: Competitive applicants for this position can hold or be pursuing a minimum of a bachelor's degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as ecology, wildlife management, natural resource management, parks and recreation, rangeland management, other related disciplines appropriate to the position. A combination of relevant education and appropriate experience is also acceptable. Resume and Cover Letter must contain enough information to show that the applicant meets the experience needed, as defined in this announcement.
- Willing and able to represent ACE and the partner organization in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner.
- Ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
- U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
- A valid driver's license and an insurable driving record (documentation to be provided upon request).
- Willing to undergo and must pass required criminal history checks.
- Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
- Willingness and ability to safely apply herbicides and/or use hand tools for invasive plant control as needed
- Ability to hike and work in hot conditions on rough, uneven terrain.
- Effective oral and written communication skills with all ages and diverse audiences
- Ability to speak to the public
- Able and willing to perform duties outdoors in varying weather conditions, especially hot outdoor conditions
- Capable of participating in sustained physical labor including ability to frequently push, pull, and lift 40 lbs
- Ability to operate independently and in remote areas
- Competent in Microsoft Office
- Experience in plant identification, especially grass species, and the ability to utilize a dichotomous key to identify unknown plants
- Ability to follow assigned protocols to perform tasks with many steps
- Skills and ability to resolve a full range of problems or situations when performing a variety of tasks in the field or office setting
- Skill in maintaining and safely operating motorized vehicles and specialized equipment including highway vehicles, backpack sprayers, weed eaters, etc.
- Experience and/or knowledge with GPS equipment
- Experience utilizing FieldMaps or other applications to collect data
- Strong desire to enter the public service field as a natural resource professional
- Experience and/or knowledge in the mission of the USFWS and other federal land management agencies
To Apply: Please submit your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and experience, and contact information for three professional/academic references to the online application page for this position here: https://usaconservation.applicantpool.com/jobs/.
NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact ACE EPIC USFWS Division Support Specialist, Andrew Garcia, at email@example.com or 928-419-7035.
Vaccination Requirement: ACE Members must verify that they are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 or have requested and been granted a medical or religious exemption to vaccination by the time they start their term.
EEO: American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.