Napanee Field Assistant – Eastern Loggerhead Shrike Recovery Program (Ontario)

Wildlife Preservation Canada is seeking one Field Assistant to assist the Napanee Shrike Biologist recovery efforts for this endangered songbird on the Napanee Plain.  This position will include assisting with surveys and monitoring of the wild population of Loggerhead Shrike, as well as assisting with the care and soft-release of groups of captive-hatched juveniles (transferred to Napanee from one of the program’s breeding facilities over July-August).  This position offers a unique opportunity to work first-hand with an endangered species, and the chance to gain experience in animal care in a field setting.

Responsibilities:

  • Road-side and on-site (with prior permission) surveys to locate breeding pairs of Loggerhead Shrike
  • Wild population monitoring (nest searching, behavioural monitoring, collection of productivity data)
  • Identification and reporting of all colour-banded Loggerhead Shrike
  • Release site enclosure maintenance
  • Behavioural monitoring of captive birds at the field release site
  • Diet preparation and provision (live food fed twice daily) to captive and released shrikes
  • Care and maintenance of invertebrate food colonies (crickets and mealworms) and live mice
  • Soft-release of young; post-release monitoring and supplemental feeding
  • Data management and monthly reports
  • Landowner communication and outreach
  • Additional tasks as required

The Field Assistant may also have the opportunity to assist with the banding of captive young and the attachment of remote tracking devices to a subset of young to be released.

This is a short contract from mid-July to the end of August, 2016, based in Napanee.  Compensation is Cdn$1400-1700/month, depending on experience.  WPC may also be able to subsidize housing costs if the successful candidate does not have access to local accommodation.

Qualifications:

Applicants should have prior experience with bird monitoring/surveying and have completed an undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline (or possess equivalent knowledge/experience).  Experience with nest searching and colour band identification preferred, as is familiarity with call playback surveys.  Previous bird handling and/or banding experience is an asset, as is prior experience with animal care/captive breeding.  Qualified candidates must also be able to work independently, navigate in the field using a map and GPS, and be willing to work long hours.  Applicants should be physically fit, able to endure working in variable weather conditions with exposure to biting insects, and enjoy working as part of a small team.  A valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle is required for the duration of the contract.

To Apply:

Please send a cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references to: Hazel Wheeler, Lead Biologist – Eastern Loggerhead Shrike Recovery, hazel@wildlifepreservation.ca or Wildlife Preservation Canada, RR#5 5420 Highway 6 North, Guelph, Ontario N1H 6J2. Email applications preferred.  Please submit your application as a single PDF or MS word file and include the email subject heading “Napanee Field Assistant Application”.  Please apply ASAP as the position will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate is found.  All applicants must be legally eligible to work in Canada.