Ecological & Vegetation Monitoring Crew Leader – New Mexico

Position Title:        Crew Leader

Position Type:         Full-time, temporary, 52 or 44 weeks

Number of Positions:   2

Location:              Albuquerque, NM (52 weeks, with the possibility of extension on the front end)

                       Socorro, NM (44 weeks)

Salary:                $685/week

Benefits:              Paid training; camping food allowance; health benefits package

Hiring Benefits:       Public Land Corps hiring authority: eligible to use, for two years upon completion of term, a noncompetitive hiring status for consideration when applying to competitive service positions for a federal agency.

Program Dates:          Albuquerque: ASAP, or from mid-April 2020 to mid-April 2021 (52+ weeks)

                        Socorro: From mid-to late-April 2020 to mid-April 2021, with furlough from December 2020 to January 2021 (44 weeks)

Southwest Conservation CorpsÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s Mission

It is the mission of the Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC) to empower individuals to positively impact their lives, their communities, and the environment. For more information, visit

Program Overview:

Crews will manage all aspects of vegetation monitoring using the Bureau of Land ManagementÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s (BLM) Assessment, Inventory, & Monitoring (AIM) methodology. More information on the BLMÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s AIM strategy can be found on the AIM website:  Crews will consist of three individuals, two crew members and one crew lead.  Together, they will monitor land health on BLM lands including National Monument lands, vegetation treatments, rangeland allotments, or reference areas using AIM methodology.

Within all plots, vegetation will be identified to species, line-point intercept will be used to gather species cover and composition data, soil stability will be measured, and soil pit descriptions will be completed. All data will be georeferenced using a GPS unit and stored in an ArcGIS geodatabase. Data are entered into a database on site with ruggedized tablets and are further analyzed and synthesized into various reports for future land management planning. The crew may also have the opportunity to assist with other public land management projects involving wildlife, range, and forestry.

Fieldwork is often in remote areas.  Crews are often required to drive to several different areas of the Field or District Office throughout a four- to eight-day work week (Ãf¢ÒÂEURÃ’ÂoehitchÃf¢ÒÂEURҝ), camp overnight, share camp meals and chores, hike several miles per day, and return to the office for equipment and data management.

Crew LeadÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s Responsibilities

Supports and manages the field crewÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s safety, wellbeing, and development.  Consistently exercises discretion and judgment. Coordinates field logistics, scheduling, crew tasks, and management of the crewÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s equipment.  Provides/asks for feedback to/from crew members regarding performance.

Is the primary contact between the crew and the SCC supervisor/BLM staff. Completes necessary administrative paperwork. Before, during, and after field data collection, the lead is responsible for the organization and quality control of all AIM data collected in both DIMA and ArcGIS.

The crew lead will analyze, interpret, or make deductions for varying data, and will be required report data to various BLM offices and stakeholders. Written reports will be completed and involve the presentation of scientific data and pre/post treatment analysis.

The crew lead should be passionate about sound science principles, be an advocate for the AIM program in the field office, and have a willingness to learn about how AIM data could be used in range, forestry, fire and wildlife programs within the BLM.  The crew lead should be passionate about facilitating the crew membersÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm) experience similarly.

Minimal Qualifications:

–       College Graduate (BachelorÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s, at minimum) with degree in ecology, botany, range science, soil science, wildlife biology, natural resource management, conservation biology, or a related field.

Ãf¢ÒÂEURÒ¢    OR previous experience performing AIM methodology

–       Aged at least 21 years upon hire

–       Ability to produce identification as stipulated by I-9 upon hire

–       Valid US driver’s license and insurable driving record

–       Ability to pass Conservation LegacyÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s and the Department of InteriorÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s background checks

–       Experience with and knowledge of Microsoft Suite Software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) or other data-collection software

–       Self-motivated and able to work independently with limited supervision after the initial training period.  The applicant must be able to maneuver and operate in a mixture of office and fieldwork.

–       Willing to empower crew members to improve in performing their responsibilities.

–       Physically capable of standing and walking (at a minimum 6 miles/day on rough, uneven terrain), bending, crouching and stooping for long periods of time, and lifting/carrying items that weigh up to 40 pounds, in upwards of 100 degree (F) heat while maintaining a cheery to neutral attitude.

–       Experience and willingness to spending multiple days (1-6 days at a time) car-camping in remote areas; familiarity with and willingness to adhere to best practices for field safety and Leave No Trace principles

–       Willingness to spend several hours per day and/or per week riding in, navigating, and driving a work vehicle on- and off-highway.

–       Experience safely operating 4WD trucks on paved and unpaved roads, often in remote areas on unimproved roads. Willingness to constantly teach and demonstrate best driving practices.

–       Ability to work in and respond to adverse weather conditions including extreme heat, monsoonal rains, and hazardous wildlife (i.e. rattlesnakes, scorpions)

–       Current or ability to obtain CPR, First Aid and Defensive Driver Training Certificates

–       At least 1 to 2 years of experience identifying and/or using taxonomic keys to identify plants to species in the field, from photos, and from pressed specimens.

Preferred Qualifications:

–       At least 6 monthsÃf¢ÒÂEURÃ’Â(tm) experience in vegetation monitoring and leading a crew of 2 or more people

–       Applicants with previous AIM or Interpreting Indicators of Rangeland Health experience are highly preferred.

–       Experience working as part of a team and be able to work well with others

–       Have excellent communication, organizational, and planning skills

–       Familiarity with Colorado flora and its associated taxonomic keys is preferred.

–       Experience with hand texturing, characterizing soil pits, and identifying soil series or ecological sites based on observational and quantitative data

–       Experience with handheld GPS units and External GNSS GPS antennae and basic troubleshooting

–       Experience with ArcMap, ArcCatalog and ArcGIS Online interface

–       Knowledge of creating maps, performing basic analysis, and organizing data

–       Knowledge of downloading, using, and syncing ArcGIS Online Maps

–       Field Safety and Risk Management Training

Public Land Corps:

The Public Land Corps (PLC) program provides the opportunity for young people between the ages of 16 and 30 (civilian) or 35 (veteran) years to work on conservation projects on public lands. Participants must successfully complete 640 hours that include at least 120 hours on federal lands through the PLC. PLC members are not federal government employees, but those who successfully complete the PLC requirements are then eligible to use, for two years, a noncompetitive hiring status for consideration when applying to competitive service positions.

To apply, go to page:

And follow the link for this position to the electronic application.

OR, go directly to the application:

The application requires a cover letter, resume/CV, and screening questions.

SCC offers several Ecological Monitoring crew positions across Colorado and New Mexico.  Please state or rank your interest in location.  Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Feel free to reach out to Ecological Monitoring Coordinator Cassandra Owen at with questions.