SHOREBIRD/ SEA TURTLE FIELD TECHNICIAN-Georgia

Agency
Little Cumberland Island Sea Turtle Project
Location
Little Cumberland Island, GA, USA
Job Category
Temporary/Seasonal Positions
Salary
$294/week, housing provided
Start Date
05/08/2018
Last Date to Apply
02/19/2018
Description
SEASONAL SHOREBIRD/ SEA TURTLE FIELD TECHNICIAN POSITION AVAILABLE START DATE: May 8, 2018 (potentially negotiable but must start by May 15) END DATE: September 30, 2018 APPLICATION DEADLINE: Application received by February 19, 2018 SALARY: $294/week, housing provided AGENCY: Little Cumberland Island Sea Turtle Project LOCATION: Little Cumberland Island, GA JOB DESCRIPTION: The Little Cumberland Sea Turtle Project was started in 1964 and is one of the oldest continuously running loggerhead turtle projects in the world. Our research concerns a long-term population study and management of sea turtle nests (primarily loggerhead along with possible green, Kemp’s ridley, and leatherback). Now, under Georgia DNR directive, we no longer patrol and tag turtles at night but we continue “tagging” turtles using a genetic sample from each nest, obtained during early morning beach surveys. Although we are an independent project, we work closely with the Georgia DNR and conduct our project under their permit. Little Cumberland Island is recognized as part of a “landscape of hemispheric importance” for shorebirds. During dawn turtle patrols, the technician will also encounter threatened and nesting shorebirds/seabirds (e.g., Wilson’s plovers, least turns, and possible American oystercatchers), as well as migratory birds of considerable interest (e.g., red knots) on a daily basis and the employee will record sightings electronically via E-bird and communicate important basic shorebird observations to DNR ornithologists on a regular basis. The GA DNR will be the official ‘employer of record’, however, the technician will coordinate work schedules and basic logistics with the Director of the LCI Sea Turtle Project. This is a seasonal position lasting 5 months, nominally 28 hours/week. Sea turtle nest surveys are conducted every morning at dawn, including weekends. Because the number of LCI sea turtle nests is relatively small (e.g., 106 nests in 2016,) there may be days when no new sea turtle nesting activity is observed. Many days, turtle nest surveys will require less than 4 hours/day, whereas occasional days may include multiple nesting turtles that may require over 4 hours/day. Work may be performed in isolated or difficult field conditions. Occasional paid days off can be arranged in advance with the Project Director, however, during peak turtle nesting season (typically late June and early July) it is understood that the technician will be responsible for contributing to daily duties. Housing and transportation on and off the island are provided. Technician transportation on the island is either on foot or via a Kawasaki Mule. There is a once weekly day trip to the mainland for shopping. RESPONSIBILITIES AND STANDARDS: Under general supervision, monitor and protect sea turtle nests and beach nesting birds on a remote barrier island beach. a) Conduct daily dawn beach surveys to assess sea turtle and beach nesting bird activity. Locate, mark, and protect sea turtle nests with hardware cloth and plastic screening. Monitor nests throughout the nesting season for signs of depredation. b) Collect genetic sample from each sea turtle nest for tagging purposes. c) Relocate sea turtle nests threatened with tidal inundation. d) Following the emergence of sea turtle hatchlings, excavate nests and conduct a hatching success evaluation. e) Note beach nesting bird activity and communicate with DNR ornithologist. Enter bird observation data electronically on E-bird. f) Enter sea turtle nesting and hatching data daily in on-line database management system (seaturtle.org). g) Submit a final report summarizing annual nesting information. Monitor beaches for stranded marine mammals and sea turtles. a) Conduct daily beach surveys to locate sea turtle strandings. b) Conduct post-mortem exams on stranded sea turtles and record information for the Sea Turtle Stranding and Salvage Network. Interact with and help educate Little Cumberland Island members, families and guests. a) Write periodic project updates (brief and informal) during the season to be distributed to the membership. b) Manage interested members, families and guests who may accompany daily surveys. Additional responsibilities. a) Adhere to established rules on Little Cumberland Island and work with island staff. b) Maintain assigned equipment, and build new screens as needed. c) Conduct routine maintenance on a Kawasaki mule.
Qualifications
QUALIFICATIONS: Candidates must have the following: a) Knowledge of general biology and biological data collection techniques and experience with computer databases. b) Bird identification skills. c) A valid driver's license. d) Accurate data recording skills. e) Self-motivation and an independent work ethic. Not missing morning patrols is crucial to the integrity of the data. f) Ability to deal with warm humid temperatures, possible insects, and time alone. OTHER INFORMATION: Little Cumberland Island, just north of Cumberland Island, is considered one of the most pristine of the Southeastern barrier islands. The interior of the island is largely oak, palmetto forest. The island is somewhat remote, largely undeveloped, privately owned, but is officially within the boundary of the Cumberland Island National Seashore. The successful applicant will likely have a great deal of time to his or herself to pursue personal interests. Although there are plenty of picture postcard days, coastal humidity is high in the summer, and afternoon temperatures hover in the 80-90 degree range. Georgia barrier islands are often buggy, the work is physically demanding, and it is anticipated that certain areas of the beach will require patrolling on foot. Persons under joint employment of the Georgia DNR are subject to a required background check. Application Submission: A cover letter, resume, and contact info for references must be submitted no later than February 19, 2018. Review of applications will begin immediately. Please send cover letter, resume and references as one document that is compatible with Microsoft Word. Please confirm availability with regard to posted start and end dates. Application should be submitted to: Dr. Russell Regnery, Director, Little Cumberland Island Sea Turtle Project, lciturtleproject@gmail.com.
Contact Person
Russell Regnery, Ph.D., Director, Little Cumberland Island Sea Turtle Project
Contact eMail
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