Marshbird Biological Technician

US-LA-Baton Rouge
Temporary, Full-Time
Job Category
Baton Rouge


Now in its second century, Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat that supports them. Audubon’s mission is engaging people in bird conservation on a hemispheric scale through science, policy, education and on-the-ground conservation action.  By mobilizing and aligning its network of Chapters, Centers, State and Important Bird Area programs in the four major migratory flyways in the Americas, the organization will bring the full power of Audubon to bear on protecting common and threatened bird species and the critical habitat they need to survive.  And as part of BirdLife International, Audubon will join people in over 100 in-country organizations all working to protect a network of Important Bird Areas around the world, leveraging the impact of actions they take at a local level.  What defines Audubon’s unique value is a powerful grassroots network of nearly 500 local chapters, 23 state offices, 41 Audubon Centers, Important Bird Area Programs in 50 states, and 700 staff across the country.  Audubon is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).



Position Summary

Supervised by Audubon Louisiana’s Director of Bird Conservation, the Marshbird Biological Technician will coordinate with Audubon Louisiana’s Avian Biologist, Coastal Scientist, and Rainey Sanctuary Manager to conduct marshbird surveys across 30 sites in coastal Louisiana, including point count surveys, nocturnal drag-line surveys, and habitat and vegetation surveys consistent with SHARP (Saltmarsh Habitat & Avian Research Program) protocols.


The position will start on October 23, 2018 and terminate at the end of July, with unpaid periods of time off in late December (2 weeks) and in March (2-4 weeks).

Essential Functions

The Marshbird Biological Technician will coordinate with Audubon Louisiana staff and external partners (LDWF, USFWS, private landowners, etc.) to conduct field-based bird and habitat surveys, and enter and summarize data into digital formats for archiving. Specific duties will include:

  • Conduct audio-visual surveys of Black Rails and other target marshbird species in coastal saltmarsh. Surveys will be conducted with an hour (before and after) of sunrise and sunset.
  • Conduct nocturnal drag-line surveys to locate, capture, and band Black Rails and other secretive marshbirds. Recruit and coordinate volunteers to assist with surveys.
  • Conduct habitat and vegetation surveys consistent with SHARP protocols. Some basic plant identification skills are required.
  • Enter data and support the preparation of interim reports.
  • Drive between survey locations, often requiring multiple stays for two or more nights in a row.

The standard work week is 40 hours across the term of employment, but will occur at odd hours, including mornings and evenings, and will require some flexibility due to weather and tidal conditions. Lodging between field surveys will be provided or reimbursed, and mileage for travel incurred by a personal vehicle will be reimbursed at the current federal rate.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Biology, Ecology, Natural Resources, Environmental Education, or a related field required.
  • At least one field season of work experience in avian ecology.
  • Excellent interpersonal as well as written and oral communication skills.
  • Must be willing to work long hours outside under physically demanding conditions (hot, humid, biting insects, alligators) and to regularly sleep in group field housing (provided).
  • Must have strong organizational skills and great attention to detail.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office programs such as Excel, Word and PowerPoint required.
  • Valid driver’s license and reliable personal vehicle are required for travel to work sites. Travel will be reimbursed at the current federal rate.
  • Must properly maintain field equipment and keep supplies and materials organized.


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