Coastal Bird Conservation Intern

Job Locations
Seasonal, Full-Time
Job Category


The National Audubon Society is a nonprofit conservation organization that protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow. We work throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education, and on-the-ground conservation. Audubon’s state, regional, national, and international programs, nature centers, and chapters have an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire, and unite diverse communities in conservation action. As a sentinel species, we recognize that the fate of birds is inextricably tied to the fate of us all.


Audubon has more than 700 staff working across the United States and seven countries in 17 state and regional offices, 41 nature centers, and 23 wildlife sanctuaries. Together as one Audubon, we aspire to alter the course of climate change and habitat loss, leading to healthier bird populations and reversing current trends in biodiversity loss.


Audubon is committed to a culture of workplace excellence, where our talented and diverse staff are deeply engaged, with a strong sense of belonging. The birds Audubon pledges to protect differ in color, size, behavior, geographical preference, and countless other ways. By honoring and celebrating the equally remarkable diversity of the human species, Audubon will bring new creativity, effectiveness, and leadership to our work throughout the hemisphere.

Position Summary

The Audubon Mid-Atlantic Coastal Bird Conservation Intern will learn about and gain experience in the bird conservation field by working with USFWS staff and Audubon staff on research monitoring and conservation management duties in salt marsh and beach habitats. Monitoring activities will include surveys of marshbirds, migratory shorebirds, horseshoe crabs, beach-nesting birds, and also measurements of vegetation and other habitat characteristics. Conservation management activities will include the stewardship of beach-nesting Piping Plovers and migratory shorebirds, including Red Knot. The intern will also assist with public outreach programs.


Reporting to Audubon Mid-Atlantic’s Director of Bird Conservation, the intern will work on a daily basis with USFWS staff both at Bombay Hook and Prime Hook NWRs and at restoration project sites nearby. The intern will also work with Audubon staff at marsh restoration project sites off the refuge. This position is an exciting opportunity to enrich a career in conservation by helping with hands-on methods used to monitor and manage birds and their habitats while developing skills needed for a career in the environmental and scientific fields. Audubon Mid-Atlantic’s Director of Bird Conservation will coordinate closely with USFWS staff at the refuges to ensure a successful work experience.


This is a temporary internship position that will begin approximately May 9th, 2022, and last for a 3-month period to July 31st, with the possibility of extension to October 31st.  Flexible start dates will be considered for enthusiastic candidates with strong interest. The position will be based at Bombay Hook NWR with frequent trips to other field locations. Housing will not be provided, so the intern will need to travel from home to the refuge on a daily basis. Deadline for applications will be April 22, 2022.


At the end of the internship, the intern will have learned about several different techniques for studying birds and bird habitat and will gain valuable experience if they choose to pursue a career in the conservation field. Experience gained will include: working in the field, a variety of bird survey methods and horseshoe crab monitoring methods, salt marsh vegetation survey methods, Mid-Atlantic bird identification, data collection and entry, and communicating to a general audience.

Essential Functions

  • Learn about the ecology and conservation of birds of salt marsh, beaches and other coastal habitats, by assisting USFWS staff and Audubon staff with research monitoring and conservation management duties.
  • Assist USFWS staff with the stewardship and monitoring of nesting Piping Plovers and migrating shorebirds in beach habitat.
  • Assist USFWS staff with horseshoe crab surveys in beach habitat.
  • Assist Audubon and USFWS staff with monitoring of salt marsh birds and habitat both on the refuges and at nearby marsh restoration project sites.
  • Data entry as directed by supervisor.
  • Assist refuge staff with outreach programs at the refuges.
  • Contribute to Audubon communications by writing blog posts about their experience during this internship.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Keen interest in birds and experience of bird identification.
  • Must be willing to conduct fieldwork, including data collection, outdoors in a variety of conditions, including hot weather, walking through difficult terrain in marshes, and riding in small boats to reach remote locations.
  • Working toward or completed a science-focused degree, a high school degree and/or a lived experience.
  • Excellent work ethic, a team-focused attitude, and the ability to work well in the field and with others, including staff and volunteers.
  • Must properly maintain field equipment and keep supplies and materials organized.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office programs, such as Excel, Word, and PowerPoint.
  • Strong organizational and communication skills, willingness to learn and collaborate with coworkers and partners in a respectful manner.
  • Valid driver’s license required.
  • Able to adapt to various field and work conditions while under deadline.

EEO Statement

The National Audubon Society is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. We are committed to a policy of nondiscrimination, inclusion and equal opportunity and actively seek a diverse pool of candidates in this search.

Accessibility Statement

The National Audubon Society endeavors to keep our careers site accessible to any and all users.  If you would like to contact us regarding the accessibility of our website or need assistance completing the application process, please contact This contact information is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the status of applications.

COVID Policy

All new hires must be fully vaccinated prior to their start of employment unless they are pre-qualified by HR for exemption.


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