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Wyoming Toad Field Technician – Wyoming
University of Wyoming
Last Date to Apply
Wyoming Toad Field Technician Positions
Background: The Wyoming toad (Anaxyrus baxteri) is a critically endangered species endemic to the Laramie Basin. The species was abundant in the 1950s and 1960s, but began declining in the 1970’s until the last known individuals were brought into captivity in the 1990’s to establish a captive breeding program. Individuals from the captive breeding program have been reintroduced into the wild, but self-sustaining breeding populations have not been reestablished. Research and monitoring is being conducted to assess progress the status of wild populations, with this project looking specifically at 1) individual survival, 2) individual behavior and habitat selection, 3) individual health status (e.g., Chytrid fungus (Bd) infection rate), and 4) how survival, behavior and health status relate to genotype.
Location: This position is based out of Laramie, Wyoming. Laramie is an affordable college town that offers easy access to many outdoor recreation opportunities in nearby mountain ranges (hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, fishing, etc.) Field work will occur at Mortenson Lake National Wildlife Refuge (approximately 15 miles southwest of Laramie) and several Safe Harbor reintroductions sites within the Laramie Basin.
Description: 2-3 technicians to assist with regular field duties, including:
Building and installing soft release enclosures for tadpoles and adults
Daily feeding and measuring of tadpoles
Release and subsequent monitoring of adult toads
Extensive radio telemetry of release toads throughout the field season
Regular surveys for non-captive Wyoming toads
Swabbing of toads for Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd)
Other activities as needed
Work Schedule: 40-50 hours per week, depending on animal care requirements, with the ability to accrue/use comp time as collected.
Compensation: Technicians will be paid $400-$440 per week (depending on experience) and provided with a shared field vehicle. Technicians will gain valuable field experience while contributing to the recovery of a critically endangered amphibian.
Duration: The position will start early/mid-May and continue through mid-August with the potential for some technician(s) to continue through September (start and end dates may be flexible for highly qualified applicants and field season may be adjusted due to weather conditions).
Housing and Transportation: Field vehicles will be provided for use during work hours only. Housing and transportation to and from work will not be provided; however, we will offer help finding housing for the summer. A personal vehicle or the willingness to bike/walk up to several miles a day (depending on rental location) is required.
To Apply: Submit a letter of interest with dates of availability, resume, CV, and contact information (name, email, phone number) for three references in a single PDF to Rachel Arrick (PhD student on project; email@example.com). Application deadline is February 15th, 2020 but review of applicants will begin immediately and will continue until the positions are filled. Questions about the position can be directed to Rachel Arrick (PhD student on project; firstname.lastname@example.org).
Additional Information: This research is being conducted through a collaboration between the Murphy Lab at the University of Wyoming (for more information see https://murphylandscapegenetics.com) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Qualified applicants will have the willingness and ability to work long hours (including weekends and holidays) and be flexible with their schedule, as work hours will be determined by animal needs. Applicants must also be able to tolerate harsh field conditions (heat/cold, wind, rain, biting insects, mud, etc.), pay extreme attention to detail, meet high standards of animal care, and be able to maintain a positive and professional attitude while working with a large/diverse field crew. Interest in the research, a strong work ethic, and the ability to conduct meticulous data collection for the recovery of an endangered species are most important. Priority will be given to individuals currently enrolled in or recently graduated from an ecology, wildlife biology, or related programs with past field experience. Qualified applicants need a valid driver’s license with a clean driving record.