Ecological Restoration Crewmember
The Nature Conservancy in West Virginia (TNC) operates an Ecological Restoration Team (ERT), which has multiple openings for crew members. The team is operated in conjunction with the Monongahela National Forest and other federal, state, and NGO partners of the Central Appalachians Spruce Restoration Initiative (CASRI).
The Ecological Restoration Crewmember is responsible for working with other crewmembers to help safely and effectively restore red spruce forests by way of releasing sapling spruce from hardwood competition. The Ecological Restoration Team focuses on restoring West Virginia’s high-elevation red spruce forests, which provide critical habitat for hundreds of animal species, including rare, threatened, and endangered species like the Cheat Mountain Salamander and the West Virginia Northern Flying Squirrel. The work that the Ecological Restoration Team performs is a vital component of practicing scientifically based active management and restoration of the forests that make West Virginia such an ecologically special place.
Ecological Restoration Crewmembers will also assist Monongahela National Forest staff with preparation of units for prescribed fire. Preparation of units will involve use of hand tools and chainsaws to remove hazardous trees and fuels. This collaborative work will help expand the use of prescribed fire across the National Forest to promote healthy fire adapted forests. Appropriate chainsaw training will be provided.
Crewmembers serve a critical role of advancing on-the-ground conservation goals through partnership with the Monongahela National Forest. Crew members will spend roughly 50% of their time conducting tree release of red spruce saplings from hardwood competition using herbicide, 20% removing non-native invasive plants, 20% preparing burn units for prescribed fire, 5% mapping and monitoring restoration outcomes, and 5% building job skills and career development.
These full-time temporary positions will run from approximately April 3, 2023 to September 28, 2023. Exceptions to these dates will be considered for current students or those with extenuating circumstances. These positions are based out of Elkins, WV and will include daily travel to work sites. Transportation will be provided for work purposes. On-site training will be provided for all essential skills. Housing is not provided. Pay for this position is $17/hour.
RESPONSIBILITIES & SCOPE
· Work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain and/or under physically demanding circumstances.
· Work collaboratively as a team and occasionally independently within the above conditions.
· Maintain hand tools, power tools and other equipment in working condition.
· Requires considerable physical exertion and/or muscular strain.
We’re Looking for You:
West Virginia is searching for individuals that want to have a direct impact by advancing our red spruce restoration in the field. If you are looking to work outdoors, have a passion for nature, and want to help advance the restoration of some of West Virginia’s most scenic and ecologically important lands, then this is the job for you. If you are up for a challenge, have a passion for conservation, and want to grow or start your career in natural resource management, then you are right for our team.
The Nature Conservancy is a global environmental leader, impacting conservation in 76 countries and territories, including all 50 U.S. states. It is also one of the top fundraising charities in the United States. By joining our West Virginia team, you will become part of a small but passionate group of dedicated people who are on the leading edge of scaling conservation of lands and waters while ensuring West Virginia takes a bold step into a low climate future that will also leverage economic diversification and change that brings real benefit to local communities.
What You’ll Bring:
· High school diploma, OR GED and 6 months of related experience*.
· Experience operating various types of equipment in a safe and efficient manner (e.g., hand tools, chainsaws, 4-wheel-drive vehicles, UTV, or similar equipment).
· Must have a valid driver’s license.
· Relevant experience* and relevant course work**
*Examples of relevant experience may include volunteering, farming, foraging, outdoor recreation, landscaping, manual labor, etc.
**Examples of relevant course work may include: biology, geology, environmental science, agriculture, forestry, or other related fields
· Strong verbal communication skills in stressful or physically demanding situations.
· Ability to follow instructions from colleagues, coworkers, and team members.
What We Bring:
Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. Through grassroots action, TNC has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff, we impact conservation throughout the world!
We’re proud to offer a work-environment that is supportive of the health, wellbeing, and flexibility needs of the people we employ!