Amphibian Research Technicians Needed

Amphibian Research Technicians Needed


Only applicants who are current or recent students (graduated no earlier than May 2022) are eligible for these positions.

The U.S. Geological Survey’s Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative in the Northeast region will be hiring 6-8 student or recent graduate contractors as field research technicians in 2023. Field work will be based out of separate duty stations located in Maryland and Massachusetts. The technicians at both duty stations will work as part of a team that surveys for amphibians within National Parks, Refuges, Forests, and other protected areas, including work in the mountains of Shenandoah National Park. Surveys will include wetland-associated amphibians as well as stream salamander and terrestrial salamander populations. Maryland technicians will be hired to work from March-October and conduct surveys primarily in MD, VA, and the District of Columbia. Massachusetts technicians will be hired to work from April-September and conduct surveys primarily throughout the states of MA, NY, NH, VT, CT, and RI.

Applicants must be willing to do 8-10-day long camping trips for amphibian surveys in other parts of the region (which includes ME, NH, VT, NY, CT, RI, PA, DE, VA, WV, NJ) as a part of a range-mapping effort. Camp sites and survey locations could be in locations with limited to no cell service.

Field work involves identifying, catching, measuring, and marking amphibians, as well as collecting water quality and environmental data. All work is outdoors, often under harsh or hot conditions or in rain, sleet, hail, and snow. All field work will be conducted as part of teams of 2-4 people, so a demonstrated ability and desire to work effectively with a group is imperative.

The position requires previous completion of academic coursework or work experience related to wildlife biology, as well as experience working in groups. It is preferred that applicants have prior field experience with amphibians and in the survey techniques involved in this position, including visual encounter surveys, dip-netting, stream transect cover searches, temporary removal sampling, terrestrial cover sampling, and marking animals with visible implant elastomer. The position will require the use of GPS units, pH/conductivity meters, passive integrated transponder (PIT) equipment, and computer software for data entry (e.g., Microsoft Excel, web-based database), and prior experience with these technologies is preferred. Technicians may also be asked to euthanize animals if voucher specimens related to amphibian disease studies are necessary.

The technicians need to be in good physical condition, as the job requires long hours in the field (including some night-time surveys) and hiking with heavy equipment, up to 45 pounds on some occasions. Hiking in mountainous areas will be conducted off-trail in remote areas on rocky, steep terrain and often for extended periods of time (10-12 hours).

Technicians must be able to work at least 40 hours per week and have flexibility in their schedules to accommodate longer days when necessary. Applicants must be willing to keep a flexible schedule, as hours will depend on weather, refuge/park access and staff availability, and other factors that may not be known in advance. Technicians are responsible for all costs of transportation to and from the duty station. A valid state driver’s license is required. Government vehicles will be provided, for field work initiated from the duty station. Housing costs are not included, but some housing may be available on the Patuxent Research Refuge. Every attempt will be made to assist technicians in finding affordable housing in the area. Approximate wages are $16.80/hour; overtime rates are not provided but technicians can be compensated for all hours worked.

We encourage applications from members of traditionally under-represented populations in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions, such as women and minority racial or ethnic groups to apply. The USGS cannot and will not tolerate discrimination and all those who seek to participate in USGS programs, activities, and services will not be discriminated against based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, sex stereotyping, gender identity, gender expression, or transgender status), national origin, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, age, protected genetic information, status as a parent, marital status, or political affiliation. In addition, the USGS will not tolerate any type of harassment, either sexual or nonsexual.

Principal Duty Stations:

Eastern Ecological Science Center at SO Conte Anadromous Fish Research Lab

1 Migratory Way, Turners Falls, MA 01376

Eastern Ecological Science Center at Patuxent Wildlife Research Refuge

12100 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, Maryland 20708-4038

Applications will be reviewed as they are received. To apply, email the following to Maddie Chartier ( by no later than December 22nd, 2022:

1) Letter of intent (please specify the time period in which you will be able to commit to this position and your duty station [MA or MD] preference)

2) Resume, including previous field experience, list of relevant course-work, contact information, and two or three reference contacts

3) One piece of evidence of current or recent enrollment in degree-seeking program (e.g., unofficial transcript, enrollment verification, a current registration card). Candidates who graduated prior to May 2022 are ineligible.

Evan H. Campbell Grant, PhD

NE Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative: USGS Eastern Ecological Science Center

S.O. Conte Research Laboratory, 1 Migratory Way, Turners Falls MA 01376