Regional Ecologist: Southwest Australia

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1 Regional Ecologist: Southwest Australia Join Australia s leading non-government conservation science team and use your skills and experience to help save Australia s threatened wildlife The non-profit Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) is the largest private owner of land for conservation in Australia, protecting wildlife and habitats across 3 million hectares (23 properties) in places like the Kimberley, Cape York, the Top End and Lake Eyre. Recognising that business as usual for conservation will mean additional extinctions, AWC is developing a new model for conservation based on the integrated delivery of practical land management and world class science. Our sanctuaries already protect two-thirds of Australian mammals and over 80% of Australian birds, and support significant populations of a number of threatened species. Four of AWC s sanctuaries are located in south-west WA: Mt Gibson (131,710 ha), Faure Island (4,561 ha), Karakamia (275 ha) and Paruna (1,952 ha). Each sanctuary hosts a significant mammal reintroduction project. At Mount Gibson, AWC is establishing one of the largest feral-predator free areas (7,800 ha) on mainland Australia. Ten species of regionally extinct mammals will be reintroduced to Mt Gibson from AWC is seeking a dedicated, positive conservation scientist for the position of Regional Ecologist, Southwest Australia. The Regional Ecologist will manage the development and implementation of AWC s science and conservation program in south-west WA, including reintroduction projects. You will supervise a small team of high calibre ecologists and work closely with AWC s operations staff to plan, implement and report on land management activities. At a national level, you will contribute to the identification of strategies to address major conservation issues facing Australian wildlife. The position requires a postgraduate degree in ecology or a related discipline and requisite experience in managing conservation programs, staff and resources. This is a rare opportunity to join the senior staff of one of Australia s leading conservation science teams. Your scientific skills and experience will help shape the delivery of practical, innovative land management strategies, making a real difference to the survival of a range of threatened species. You will be involved in cutting-edge research on major conservation issues including the ecology and management of feral predators; you will manage historic translocations of endangered species; and your work will advance the measurement and reporting of ecological health in diverse habitats. Enquiries: AWC National Conservation and Science Manager: Applications: send a detailed letter addressing critical competencies, together with your CV - in one document - to: Closing date for applications: 12 November 2014 Please note: This is a permanent, full-time position. Applicants must be an Australian citizen/permanent resident or have a suitable visa that allows permanent full-time work in Australia, in order to apply for this position. A working-holiday visa is not appropriate. Should a suitable local candidate be sourced, sponsorship will not be considered. australian wildlife conservancy po box 8070 subiaco east western australia 6008 p: f: e: w:

2 Role Description Designation: Reporting to: Supervises: Based: Regional Ecologist, South-west [RE-SW] National Conservation & Science Manager [NCSM] Other staff, students, Interns, volunteers, contractors Karakamia Wildlife Sanctuary, Perth hills, WA Organisational context: The RE-SW will work as part of a team of AWC ecologists and land managers based at AWC s four sanctuaries in southwest Australia: Karakamia and Paruna in the Perth hills; Faure Island in Shark Bay; and Mt Gibson in the Avon Wheatbelt - Yalgoo. The primary responsibilities of AWC s science team in south-west Australia are to: Measure the ecological health of AWC s wildlife sanctuaries; Implement a program of threatened species reintroductions and related research; and Conduct strategic research and monitoring to improve conservation and land management; The primary duties of the RE-SW are to: Manage AWC s conservation, science and research program at sanctuaries in south-west WA. Manage a program of threatened species reintroductions. Supervise and mentor AWC s science staff. Work with AWC s operations staff to plan, implement and report on conservation actions. Assist the delivery of AWC s national science program across Australia. Contribute to AWC s communication and fundraising activities. Develop productive relationships with a variety of stakeholders including government agencies, external researchers, conservation, business and indigenous sectors. The position requires a high level of competence in wildlife survey, research and science communication, and excellent personnel management skills. The RE-SW reports to the National Conservation and Science Manager (Dr John Kanowski), and will work closely with other members of the senior science team which includes AWC s Chief Scientist (Dr Sarah Legge), the Southeast Regional Ecologists (Assoc. Prof. David Roshier) and the National Science Coordinator (Dr Fay Lewis). Other key positions in the SW: The RE-SW supervises a small team of ecologists in south-west WA. At present, these are a Wildlife Ecologist located at Mt Gibson and two Field Ecologists based at Karakamia, as well as interns and volunteers. Other key positions in relation to this role include: The SW Sanctuary Managers, responsible for delivering operations and land management programs. An Administration & Operations Support Officer (SW), based at Karakamia. RE SW 1410 Page 2/6

3 Critical Competencies: 1. Advanced knowledge of the conservation of wildlife and ecosystems in Australia including: The nature and functioning of the Australian biota; Major threats to native wildlife and their habitats, and how these threats can be mitigated; and The management of reintroduced species. 2. Excellent ecological research skills including: Advanced knowledge of experimental design and sampling methods; Advanced field skills in wildlife survey, including animal trapping, identification and handling; radiotracking; camera-trapping; and Well-developed capacity to manage vegetation and other biological surveys. 3. Advanced competence in the statistical analysis of ecological data and the use of computer software packages including analytical, graphing, word processing and spreadsheet software, and familiarity (or better) with GIS and database software. 4. Excellent communication skills including a well-developed capacity to draft and review scientific reports and publications, compose funding applications and reports, and communicate science and conservation messages to a general audience. 5. Excellent interpersonal skills including the ability to: Lead a team of ecologists; Work productively under supervision; Work collaboratively with other senior scientists; Work closely with a diverse range of staff including operations and development personnel; Establish and maintain relationships with a diverse range of stakeholders. 6. An ability to manage financial and human resources, at the level relevant to this position. 7. Experience working in remote areas and capacity to spend extended periods in the field. 8. The ability to improvise and problem-solve, developing practical solutions with limited resources. Qualifications: 1. A postgraduate degree in ecology or a related discipline is essential. Licenses & Certificates: 1. A valid manual driver s licence, with 4WD experience in remote conditions is essential. 2. First aid certificate (desirable). 3. Police clearance certificate (if required). Inherent requirements of the role: The execution of tasks associated with the position involves extensive fieldwork, which can be for extended periods in remote locations away from an established field base. The working environment at this time is predominantly outdoors and often in the extremes of weather hot and wet and/or dry, especially when conducting surveys. The fieldwork component of this position is physically demanding and includes lifting, carrying, pushing and pulling loads, bending, climbing and driving a variety of vehicles. The successful applicant must be physically capable of performing these activities in order to carry out the inherent role responsibilities. RE SW 1410 Page 3/6

4 Responsibilities 1. Implement a program of ecological surveys at AWC s SW sanctuaries Implement a program of general and targeted fauna and vegetation surveys. Fauna surveys will include a range of techniques and methods including standard observational surveys; live-trapping of vertebrate taxa; radio/ GPS-tracking; and camera trapping. Conduct fauna survey work in accordance with AWC protocols and policies and relevant permits. Manage the collection of vegetation data, the preparation of vegetation maps, field and virtual herbaria. Manage collections of biological samples. Ensure all relevant data are recorded and reported. 2. Implement an ecological monitoring program to measure the health of AWC s SW sanctuaries. Prepare Ecological Health Measurement Plans for each SW sanctuary, consistent with guidelines set by the NCSM. Implement monitoring programs consistent with the plans. Prepare annual reports on the Ecological Health of AWC s SW sanctuaries. 3. Manage reintroduction programs on AWC s SW sanctuaries Manage reintroduced populations of threatened species at AWC s SW sanctuaries. Supervise the Mt Gibson Wildlife Restoration project. Liaise with key stakeholders in relation to AWC reintroduction programs in the south-west Work with the NCSM and National Science team to develop: o Management plans and translocation schedules for reintroduced species; o Robust monitoring of reintroduced species; and o Research to improve our ability to carry out reintroductions and maintain viable populations. 4. Supervise, administer and participate in biodiversity research programs Review research priorities and objectives for the SW sanctuaries. With the agreement of the NCSM, design, coordinate and execute AWC research projects, including collaborative projects with external partners. Oversee the administration of all research carried out in the SW: o Ensure all AWC research projects (including collaborations) address AWC priorities, are carried out in accordance with AWC s research strategy, and are appropriately administered. o Work with the NCSM to develop Research Agreements with partners in collaborative projects, and to manage interaction with collaborators. o Ensure research carried out by external researchers is covered by an External Research Proposal that is approved by the NCSM, and that relevant data, reports and publications are collected. Publish, either alone or with others, the outcomes of AWC research projects. Engage and provide supervisory support to students and Interns, where required. RE SW 1410 Page 4/6

5 Develop strategic relationships with organisations that conduct research to improve conservation outcomes, particularly research on AWC sanctuaries that addresses high priority issues for AWC. Participate in threatened species recovery teams where requested by NCSM. 5. Participate in the development and implementation of conservation and land management strategies for AWC s SW sanctuaries, in collaboration with AWC operations staff. Prepare strategies for fire management, feral animal and weed control, in accordance with AWC planning frameworks, in collaboration with Sanctuary Managers. Review annual work plans developed to implement these strategies at AWC s SW sanctuaries. Oversee the preparation of annual reports on the implementation and outcomes of management programs at AWC s SW sanctuaries. Assist in the implementation of conservation and land management projects, as required. 6. Oversee the management of information and data for the SW region. Ensure all relevant AWC information and data are collected and stored appropriately, including data collected by external partners and students. Provide information to other AWC staff as requested on the science program in the SW region. Compile reports and perform data analysis, as requested by the NCSM. Promote the publication of articles in scientific and popular media. 7. Assist with the management of equipment and materials Oversee the management and maintenance of all assets used by the SW science team. 8. Other administration Work with the NCSM and National Operations Manager to develop and report against operational plans and budgets, including activity reporting, financial reporting, and other metrics. Manage all necessary permit applications, annual returns and other required reports to government authorities, to facilitate the conduct of the science program at AWC s SW sanctuaries. Ensure all relevant expenditure is in accordance with AWC policies and procedures. Ensure all required financial records and paperwork are retained and submitted. Maintain other records and diaries relating to the discharge of your duties. 9. Participate in National Science projects Carry out desktop and field assessments of potential new acquisitions and projects, and assist with the preparation of reports. Assist in the identification of research and conservation priorities and opportunities. Contribute to the development of robust monitoring and survey protocols. 10. Assist in the implementation of AWC s Internship and Volunteer programs Manage the selection and supervision of Interns and Volunteers at the SW sanctuaries. RE SW 1410 Page 5/6

6 Manage all relevant administration of Interns and Volunteers in the SW, including the development of Agreements, Intern evaluations and reporting, and appropriate liaison with other AWC staff including Sanctuary Managers and Head Office. Ensure Interns and Volunteers are provided with a suitable induction and training, including addressing OHS requirements. 11. Participate in AWC s communication, education, and fundraising programs. Assist in drafting, submission and management of applications for funding. Assist in drafting reports for supporters, including progress reports on implementation of projects. Assist with planning, co-ordination and implementation of supporter events and other sanctuary events, as required. Provide information and material for AWC s communication, education and fundraising activities, including text and photos for AWC s newsletters, website, media releases. 12. Management of staff and contractors Provide supervision to ecologists in the SW and mentor their development. As required, co-ordinate, engage and supervise: o Other staff; and o Contractors. Ensure all relevant AWC policies are complied with in relation to the engagement staff, contractors and interns/students. 13. Ensure appropriate management of risks in relation to the health and safety Key activities and responsibilities: In accordance with the requirements of the NCSM and National Operations Manager, undertake risk assessments and prepare risk management plans for science activities at each SW sanctuary, to protect the health and safety of yourself, other staff, contractors, volunteers, interns, students and visitors. Implement and comply with the provisions of the approved risk management plan and AWC OH&S policies and procedures, including Safe Work Practices for AWC Ecologists. In particular: o Ensure the installation and use of hazardous materials and equipment is consistent with accepted safety standards; o Ensure that you, other staff, volunteers, interns and students are given adequate training before they use any plant, equipment, tools and/or vehicles, and that a safety induction is undertaken. o Ensure incident and near miss reports are filled out and submitted as per approved AWC policies and procedures, in a timely manner. 14. Other tasks Undertake your duties at other locations as requested by the NCSM. Undertake other specified tasks as requested by the NCSM. RE SW 1410 Page 6/6

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