Biological Field Technician, Western EcoSystems Technology, Inc. (WEST)

Iowa, USA

Position Title: Biological Field Technician

Organization: Western EcoSystems Technology, Inc. (WEST)

Location: Various counties (e.g., Adair, Cass, Poweshiek, Greene, Webster, Ida, Pocahontas, O’Brien, Marshall), Iowa

Organization Overview: Western EcoSystems Technology, Inc. (WEST), a dynamic medium size environmental consulting firm, is looking for 33 temporary full time Biological Field Technician to help investigate the impact of wind turbines on bats and birds at operational wind facilities throughout Iowa, starting end of June 2022 through October 31, 2022. Since 1990, WEST has grown to be one of the premier environmental and statistical consulting firms in the United States. WEST has a permanent core of professionals with broad experience in basic and applied ecological studies and the sophisticated analysis of natural resource data.

Position Overview: Biological field technicians will conduct standardized searches beneath wind turbines to locate and document bird and bat carcasses. Successful candidates must be able to follow field and data collection protocols, work well both independently and with others, and live and work in a rural setting. Training will be provided on bird/bat identification and field data collection. An average work week may include 30-40 hours for full-time employees, though there may be weeks requiring shorter or longer hours, depending on the project and seasonal workloads. Travel between sites will be required; personal vehicle use will be reimbursed for mileage or a field vehicle will be provided if needed. Successful candidates will work independently, but within a larger team of field technicians, gaining hands on field experience collecting scientific data used to assess the impacts of wind turbines on birds and bats across Iowa. Apply now to join the team of nationally recognized avian and bat biologists as a biological field technician! This is a general description of the functions for this position and is not inclusive of all the duties which may be associated with this position.

Duties: Conduct field work while adhering to WEST and client field safety requirements. Conduct standardized fatality searches and follow electronic and paper data collection protocol. Collect data for standardized protocols to measure sources of bias in fatality surveys. Potential opportunities to conduct additional biological surveys.

Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Natural Resources, Wildlife Management, Wildlife Biology, or an equivalent degree preferred; undergraduates or other enthusiastic workers are encouraged to apply
  • Candidates with field experience at regional wind projects will be given preference
  • Experience with macro-photography, tablet data collection, GPS units, compass, and other field equipment is preferred Experience using field guides/keys for identification is preferred, especially for bird and bat identification within the Central Flyway Candidates must be organized, and able to collect and manage electronic data, including implementing quality control measures
  • Must be able to work independently and interact professionally and respectfully with project managers, biologists, technicians, clients, and landowners
  • Job requires the person filling this position to be able to appear for work on time; start times can often start as early as sunrise
  • Physical Requirements: Applicants must be in good physical condition, as surveys will require walking for entire shifts in locations where temperatures and conditions can be extreme as well as safely opening and closing gates weighing 50+ pounds.
  • Must be equipped with and provide own suitable safety toed footwear (steel- or composite-toe), binoculars, clothing, water bottles, etc.
  • Due to stringent client requirements and WEST’s commitment to provide a safe and healthy work environment for everyone, all prospective hires will be required to provide documentation that they have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to their start date. As an exception, employees may also request a Medical or Religious exemption from the vaccine requirement and the request must be supported by a doctor for a medical exemption or by a statement from the employee outlining a sincerely held belief to qualify for a religious exemption. Please contact us if you have any questions related to the requirement and/or exemptions. After an offer of employment is made, the candidate must successfully pass a pre-employment background check, drug screening, and a DMV records check that meets WEST’s minimum criteria to operate a motor vehicle on behalf of the company. A valid driver’s license will be required. Candidates must adhere to all health and safety requirements. WEST provides equal employment opportunities to all individuals regardless of their race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, age, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, disability status, genetics, and any protected veteran status, and any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law. Further, WEST takes affirmative action to ensure that all individuals are treated fairly, and without discrimination, for recruitment, selection, advancement and every other term and privilege associated with employment.

Start/End Dates: June 27 – October 31, 2022

Pay/Benefits: $17.00 – $18.00 per hour, depending on experience,
Completion Bonus: $500.00 upon completion of project if in good standing
Housing: Housing or rent reimbursement may be provided to qualifying applicants 

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

How to Apply: Please view the full online Job Description with instructions for the online application.