Seasonal Field Technician

Seasonal, Full-Time
Job Category


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

Audubon California is seeking an individual to conduct bird surveys in the Central Valley of California who is comfortable working independently in remote settings, is a strong communicator, can interact professionally with private landowners and land managers, can confidently identify bird species and estimate numbers, and can manage scientific data with close attention to detail.


The qualified candidate will work on two of Audubon California’s main initiatives in the Working Lands Program. The Tricolored Blackbird Program is a coordinated effort to identify Tricolored Blackbird colonies nesting in agricultural fields that are at risk of harvest. The Migratory Bird Conservation Partnership is a collaboration between Audubon CA, The Nature Conservancy, and Point Blue Conservation Science to protect, restore, and enhance priority conservation areas in California for migratory birds. In the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys, this program works with private agricultural landowners to identify, evaluate, and implement alternative field management practices that benefit a variety of migratory birds.


The ideal candidate will have experience with bird monitoring and specifically shorebird and waterfowl of the Pacific Flyway, field data collection, interacting with landowners, and be able to work both independently and as part of a team.


This is a full time (40 hours/week), 4-6 month position beginning March 15th, 2018 and may include occasional overtime.


Application review will begin January 22, 2018.

Essential Functions

  • Conduct Tricolored Blackbird surveys from public roads throughout the San Joaquin Valley approximately half-time or 2.5 days per week to identify and record breeding colony locations on farm fields.
  • Conduct shorebird and/or other bird surveys from public roads, private and/or public lands approximately half-time or 2.5 days per week to measure bird response to wildlife-friendly farming practices.
  • Communicate regularly with private landowners about property access.
  • Collect and enter data in the field, proof data in a database.
  • Conduct preliminary data analyses and report writing.
  • Assist with project set-up a needed.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor's Degree in related field or 2+ years applicable field experience.
  • Ability to identify birds by sight, especially shorebirds and waterfowl. Tricolored Blackbird identification training will be provided.
  • Experience driving 4WD vehicles and ATVs on narrow roads and in variable conditions.
  • Strong initiative and self-motivation and ability to work with limited supervision.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with Audubon staff and supervisors, conservation partners, private landowners and farmers.
  • Experience working on field projects; work in an agricultural setting and interaction with private landowners a plus.
  • Ability to travel within the Central Valley of California and to work evenings, as needed and to stay in field housing part-time or commute from a Central Valley location (full-time housing is not provided).
  • Comfort using a GPS unit and field-testing/using ArcGIS Collector.
  • Familiarity with Word, Access, Excel, PowerPoint.
  • Ability to engage in outdoor activity and carry field equipment in cold, wet weather and in extreme heat.
  • Proven effectiveness working in a team setting.
  • Comfort working alone in remote field locations.
  • A valid driver’s license.


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