Job Type: Volunteer - Temporary Positions Available: 3 Duration: 7 months (September 2013 to April 2014) Location: Laysan Island, Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument Closing Date: August 1, 2013*
Description: The US Fish and Wildlife is seeking 3 volunteers for the winter field season (September thru March) on Laysan Island. Laysan Island is a 1000 acre coralline island located about 900 miles northwest of O'ahu. The island frequently referred to as the “jewel” of Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. It hosts ~ 1 million seabirds and the following seven endangered species: Laysan Finch, Laysan Duck, Nihoa Millerbird, Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle, Hawaiian Monk Seal, Cyperus pennatiformis var. bryanii (an endemic sedge), and Pritchardia remota (a fan palm). It is considered to be among the most intact terrestrial ecosystems in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands and the only island with an inland lake. For more information on Laysan Island see http://www.papahanaumokuakea.gov/visit/laysan.html
As a volunteer you will have the opportunity to live in this remote setting. You will be surrounded by birds, sea life, and native vegetation. Laysan is a remote site, only accessible by ship. It is a four day ship ride from Oahu to Laysan. On the island, all transportation is by foot. Living conditions consist of an 8x10 weatherport tent for personal use, and several 16x20 tents for communal/food storage and prep/working. Personal communications from the field site are limited to “text only” e-mail (no internet).
Additionally, in an effort to prevent the introduction of non-native species, the USFWS enforces a quarantine on the island. As part of this quarantine, all “soft” (clothing, shoes, straps, etc) must be purchased new and frozen 48 hours prior to departure to Laysan. All “hard” items (cameras, musical instruments, snorkeling equipment, etc.) may either be inspected and cleaned thoroughly and frozen or bug bombed prior to departure.
Volunteers are expected to work 44 hours/week. However, this does not necessarily mean 8-5 M-F. Certain projects must be completed in the evening or in consecutive days. Primary responsibilities of the Winter Tour include the following: • Invasive plant monitoring and removal (~50% of time) • Native plant propagation • Vegetation surveys • Bird surveys (including several Laysan and Black-foot Albatross studies, Laysan Duck monitoring, and shorebird surveys) • Green sea turtle nest monitoring • Entomological surveys • Data collection and management • Weekly and summary reporting • Camp maintenance Requirements: Must be able to walk 10 miles per day, lift 80 lbs. and carry 50 lbs., and swim well in ocean conditions, be capable of identifying birds by call, comfortable with herbicide use, and have full color eyesight correctable to 20/20.
Prior experience in the following is desirable but not necessary: invasive species control and mapping, plant propagation, handling endangered species, and bird identification and handling. More important is the ability to function in a remote and communal living environment. Critical skills include the ability to work as part of team, to communicate effectively, and to proactively address any issues that may arise.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service will provide: housing and a living stipend in Honolulu, transportation between Honolulu and Laysan, quarantine clothes, and food and housing on Laysan. The flight to Honolulu is not paid for.
*Applications will be evaluated as they arrive, and these positions may be filled by this date. Additionally, international applicants should submit their paperwork immediately to allow adequate time for visa acquisition.
Please submit a cover letter, resume, and at least three references to: Cindy Rehkemper Cindy_Rehkemper@fws.gov