Sierra Nevada Carnivore Monitoring Intern

Expected Dates
July 22, 2019 to September 13, 2019
Sequoia National Forest
Position ID

The selected interns will conduct non-invasive surveys for various carnivores in the Sierra Nevada, including fisher (Pekania pennanti) and Pacific marten (Martes caurina), for the Forest Service’s carnivore monitoring program. This long-term monitoring program began in 2002 and will be conducting its 18th year of data collection in the summer-fall of 2019.

The field crew will be responsible for installing, servicing and removing several noninvasive sampling devices at pre-determined locations. Sampling devices will include track-plate boxes, remote sensor cameras, and hair snares. Interns will be responsible for collecting and identifying species from tracks and photographs as well as collecting hair for genetic analysis. Survey sites are located between ~3000 ft and 10,000 ft and occur largely in forested areas (mixed conifer, montane hardwood, true fir, sub-alpine). Accessing many of the survey locations requires hiking off-trail in remote areas and difficult terrain. Crew members may be required to work independently at times though most work will occur in pairs. Extensive car camping and some backpacking will be required and will involve up to 4 consecutive days.  Surveys will take place primarily on the Sierra and Sequoia National Forests but may also occur on the Inyo, Stanislaus, Eldorado, Tahoe, or Lassen National Forests or adjacent lands in Yosemite National Park.

Applicants for these positions should be able to work independently with a high degree of initiative. Other qualifications include the ability to confidently navigate off-trail through difficult terrain using map and compass; excellent physical condition (capable of hiking 3-10 miles off-trail/day); safe, responsible driving habits; the ability to cope with strenuous field conditions that include hot temperatures, steep terrain, dense vegetation, poison oak, and insects.

Start date is not flexible due to mandatory training required during the start week.  End date may be flexible +/- 1 week.

Please note: The Forest Service does not accept phone calls about this position.  Please submit all inquiries via email.
  • The field crew will likely be based near Shaver Lake, CA (Sierra National Forest) although other duty locations are also possible (North Fork Bass Lake, Springville, or Ponderosa, CA)
  • Training in how to operate remote sensor cameras and baited track plate stations, track identification, collection of genetic samples, off trail navigation using GPS and map/compass, data management
  • Housing is located in close proximity to National Forest lands where there is abundant outdoor recreational opportunities (hiking, swimming, camping, fishing, etc…)
  • No
Main Area of Focus
Natural Resources Mgmt
Education, Training & Skills Expected
degree minor or extensive experience
some coursework or experience
Ecology & Restoration
some coursework or experience
some experience
competent without supervision
Orienteering compass skills
competent with supervision