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State of Montana Fisheries Technician in Kalispell, Montana


Please remember to attach the resume and supplemental question response listed in this announcement. Applications missing the requested documents will be considered incomplete and may not progress further in the process. The State Application portion will not be reviewed, only the documents listed above will be considered. However, you must still apply through the State of Montana Career site. Documents not requested will not be considered in the recruitment process. This position closes at 11:59 PM Mountain Time on January 21, 2021.

Supplemental Questions:Please answer the following question in 500 words:

  1. Describe your experience in conducting fisheries field work. Briefly specify the goals of each project and how you helped to achieve them.

Special Information:

FWP is hiring for two permanent, seasonal positions.

  • Position 1 will span late February through the end of October.

  • Position 2 will run May through the end of October.

The normal work schedule for both will primarily be Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm. However, weekends, early mornings, late evenings, and overnight trips will be required during portions of the year. While most work weeks will consist of 40 hours, additional hours will be required at times. There will be a probationary period of 2080 hours for new State of Montana employees.

Kalispell is a dynamic community located within a thirty-minute drive of Flathead Lake, Whitefish Mountain Ski Resort, Glacier National Park, several National and State forests and parks, and the Bob Marshall Wilderness area. Kalispell is the retail, professional, medical, and governmental center of the Flathead Valley serving approximately 150,000 people in Northwest Montana. The office for this position is located within the Regional Headquarters building, located at 490 N. Meridian Rd., Kalispell. The regional Headquarters is a well-maintained office building which houses all regional divisions, including Fisheries, Enforcement, Wildlife and Parks.

References should consist of three (3) applicable supervisory professional references.

Barring unforeseen delays, interviews will be conducted during the week of February 15, 2021.

Identity of applicants who become finalists may be released to the public if the Department deems it necessary. Employees who exceed 1,040 hours in a calendar year are also provided health, dental and life insurance. Other benefits include retirement, paid vacation, sick and holidays. This position may be covered by a VEBA (Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association).

A successful applicant will be subject to a background investigation.

Women and minorities are under-represented in this job category and are encouraged to apply.

Physical and Environmental Demands:

Work will involve fisheries field research and monitoring in the Flathead River system. Projects will focus on native and introduced species, including Westslope Cutthroat Trout, Rainbow Trout, Mountain Whitefish, Bull Trout, and others. Successful implementation of work will require planning, prioritization, occasional change and re-organization of work schedules, and overnight camping. Working conditions are routinely hazardous. The technicians will work in/around water on lakes, rivers, and streams that may be dangerous. Exposure to potentially harmful pathogens, chemical agents and offensive sights and sounds are possible. Extreme caution and safety protocols need to be followed to prevent exposure to serious health hazards indoors and outdoors. Occasional exposure to outdoor hazards such as severe weather, water hazards, and extreme terrain is expected. Requires lifting heavy objects and carrying 40 to 75 lbs. on uneven terrain or in water, which may frequently expose the employee to slick walking surfaces. The ability and desire to hike into wilderness backcountry locations for field work and camping. In addition, operation of motorized and nonmotorized watercraft during day and night on lakes, rivers, and reservoirs, and towing trailers is expected. Interactions with the public may include landowners, anglers, and hunters who have conflicting issues and concerns. The frequency of contacts varies depending on the activity under consideration, but some type of public contact is typically engaged in on a daily basis.

Typical problems encountered by this technician will involve field challenges relative to applications of standard techniques and adaptations to those techniques in a field setting. Specifically, the technician may need to decide when and where based on accepted solutions that would be necessary and appropriate to complete a specific data collection task. Adaptations to procedures in field operations become necessary because of human safety issues, aquatic resource considerations, fishing regulations, landownership issues, or environmental conditions. Integrating all of these factors into daily field operation decisions yet while accomplishing study objectives will demand creativity within the bounds of the data collection standards and cooperation among field staff.

Field research activities will require good interpersonal skills that facilitate cooperation and support among the various affected interests working and living in the study area. Interpersonal relations will include communicating and cooperating with coworkers, landowners and various publics to maintain support for the project. Coordinating various agency personnel supporting the field operations is often complicated and requires good problem solving and interpersonal skills.

Job Duties:

  1. Data collection, management, and field work, under the direction of staff.

A. Working with the supervisor and crew, each technician coordinates field and laboratory work schedules with biologists and other co-workers to collect a variety of scientific data associated with prioritized fisheries projects using established protocols and guidelines. Works with supervisor to develop field and laboratory schedules and coordinates specimen sampling with the biologist and co-workers to ensure efficient and thorough surveys. Each technician works with minimal or no direct supervision and, as necessary, evaluates the situation and determines the best approach for data collection according to planned sampling designs.

B. Each technician will help conduct aquatic investigations which can include surgical implantation of transmitters in fish; tracking of telemetered fish by foot, boat, truck, and aircraft; capture and transport of fish using instream traps and electrofishing; installation and removal of large fish traps and instream fencing; fish habitat data collection; spawning surveys; streambed coring; and additional projects requiring similar skill sets. Assists with the eradication of undesirable fish populations or other aquatic organisms through application of piscicide or herbicide chemicals in ponds or using application regulations. Proficiency in or willingness to learn the operation of an electrofishing jet boat on a dynamic river with hazards during all weather conditions, day and night, is desired. Extensive hiking and occasional backpacking in Wilderness and non-Wilderness settings in grizzly bear habitat will be required. Handling and management of stock animals is desired but not required.

C. Conducts the maintenance, purchase, repair, assembly, and testing of a variety of field equipment such as boats and motors, vehicles, electrofishers, nets, and other specialized fisheries survey and inventory equipment. Operates equipment such as electrofishing gear, boats, four-wheel drive vehicles, and ATVs.

D. May serve as a lead worker for day-to-day operations; may lead and train co-workers and volunteers; assigns and monitors work tasks; establishes work pace; demonstrates proper work methods; resolves day-to-day problems, and reports major issues to supervisor. Recommends process and/or procedural changes or provides modifications to improve efficiency or effectiveness of process. Performs work duties in a safe manner and ensures other crew members follow safety procedures.

E. Maintain proficiency as a fisheries technician through education and training. Examples may include swiftwater rescue, wilderness first aid or responder, CPR, fisheries techniques, data management, and statistical analyses training.

F. May be required to enter, record, summarize, and manage ecological/biological data using standard software and existing databases. Technician completes basic analysis of samples collected using laboratory equipment. Assists in the preparation of and reviews draft versions of reports.

  1. Represents FWP in public education and outreach.

During the course of routine fieldwork, professionally represent FWP in a variety of situations and to a variety of people interested in the assigned research project. This may include university personnel, staff from federal, state, and local governments, FWP staff, the media, or the general public. Organizes and performs public outreach and education activities.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

• Basic knowledge and understanding of sampling and field operations will be required.

• Ability to prioritize and carryout project processes and act as a lead worker.

• Training in and knowledge of conducting surveys

• Training in and knowledge of the use of complex electronic devices.

• Knowledge and experience with computer applications such as word processing, and spreadsheets applications are required.

• Map reading skills and familiarity with map coordinate systems are required.

• Good organizational and time management skills

• Ability to accurately collect, record, and summarize data.

• Knowledge of the safe collection of tissue, or other samples from fish and other aquatic organisms

• Ability to work with professional biologists, other research assistants and the public.

• Communication skills, both written and verbal.

• Applicants must be knowledgeable and familiar with motorboat operation, workplace safety

• Be able to operate four-wheel drive vehicles with training.

• Able to work with little or no direct supervision in potentially hazardous conditions is expected.

• Experience with mapping software and the use of GPS units are preferred.

Minimum Qualifications:

The knowledge, skills, and abilities of this position are normally attained through combination of education and experience equivalent to a Bachelor’s Degree in fish biology, fish and wildlife management, ecology, biology, and one year of job-related experience. Other combinations of education and experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Job: *Environmental Sciences

Title: Fisheries Technician

Location: Kalispell

Requisition ID: 20143007