Under the close supervision of the Nutria Eradication Operations Supervisor and in coordination with the Program Manager, the incumbent will serve as one of the lead field scientists for the Nutria Eradication Program. Nutria are highly invasive and extremely detrimental to the environment, but primarily nocturnal and relatively elusive in low densities. This position will play a hybrid role in the Program, conducting nutria surveys and trapping across the southern portion of the nutria infestation, assisting with the coordination of field crews, and serving as the local lead for development and implementation of the Judas Nutria [Telemetry] Project. The incumbent will assist the Operations Supervisor with training, leading, and evaluating field crew technicians and scientific aides to survey for, detect, and remove nutria, with the ultimate goal of eradicating nutria from the State of California. The incumbent will lead the team by example in conducting habitat suitability assessments, visual observation and camera surveys, trapping, and electronic data collection (i.e., ESRI Collector smartphone application), as well as effective use of baits and lures and obtaining entry permits from local landowners. The incumbent will assist the Operations Supervisor and Program staff with the capture/recapture, immobilization, telemetry-outfitting, strategic releases, and monitoring of sterilized nutria via VHF- and satellite-telemetry equipment and game cameras, and serve as a local lead for captive animal care. The incumbent will work with the Operations Supervisors, other field crew leads, and Planning Specialist to evaluate and help refine detection and trapping methods and tools for the most effective and efficient detection and removal of nutria. The incumbent will also closely coordinate with other regions and Department functions, as well as other affected and involved local, State, and Federal agencies. Work includes preparing draft reports and correspondence and answering routine questions from the public relative to Departmental nutria efforts. The primary geographical focus of this position will be in Fresno, Madera, Merced, Stanislaus, Tuolumne, and Mariposa counties, but work may be assigned in any part of the area of nutria infestation. This position is physically demanding, but highly rewarding given the ultimate accomplishment of protecting California's wetlands, waterways, infrastructure, and agriculture from the devastation nutria have caused in other regions of North America.
Education: Possession of a bachelor's or advanced degree with a major in a biological, chemical, physical, or environmental science, soil science, water science, hydrology, agronomy, natural resource science, environmental or public health, physical geography, or a closely related scientific discipline. (Admission to a masters or doctoral degree program in a biological, chemical, physical, or environmental science, soil science, water science, hydrology, agronomy, natural resource science, environmental or public health, physical geography, or a closely related scientific discipline shall be considered to meet these education qualifications.)
Knowledge of: Basic principles of land, water, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources research; principles of ecology; soil and irrigation sciences, resource management, hydrology, geology, and waste prevention; statistical methods; land-use practices with reference to their general effect on human health, natural resources, agricultural productivity, and the environment; effects of hazardous and non-hazardous waste material and their interactions on the environment; chemical reactions; California and Federal environmental laws, rules, regulations, and requirements; basic toxicology, hydrology, geology, and principles of risk assessment and risk management; concepts employed in a variety of disciplines including environmental planning, economics, and resource management; geolocation and geo-referencing software applications, resource conservation program impacts and implementation strategies; and recycling issues.
Ability to: Apply or modify scientific methods and principles; collect environmental data; analyze and evaluate data and reach sound conclusions; review, check, and interpret scientific and environmental reports; analyze situations and take appropriate actions; establish and maintain cooperative relations with all persons contacted; communicate effectively; prepare clear, complete, and technically accurate reports; apply laws, rules, regulations, policies, and requirements of California and Federal environmental protection and resource management programs; assess the impact of proposed State and Federal environmental legislation and regulations; understand principles of risk assessment and risk management; work with professionals from a variety of disciplines within and outside of State government; and review and understand technical research reports on emerging public health and environmental issues.