Jobs: Herpetology

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Wildlife Conservation Specialist (Turtles)

Date Posted: 9 Feb 2018 (Show details)

Institution: Minnesota Zoo
Location: Apple Valley, Minnesota
Closing date: 26 February 2018

The Minnesota Zoo is seeking an energetic biologist to conduct research to improve the conservation of imperiled turtles in Minnesota. Specific activities will include evaluating mechanisms to reduce turtle mortality of roadways in the central and southeastern part of the State and GPS and VHF telemetry to assess spatial and movement ecology, and may extend to assessing strategies to reduce nest predation.

This position is part time temporary unclassified, limited in duration and is anticipated to last through spring, 2021. The position is grant funded and may transition to full-time status in July, 2018. The schedule for this position is Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 3:00 pm to start (negotiable) and may increase or decrease in hours as the seasons and funding change.

This position is responsible for planning and performing professional wildlife research and conservation work for the Zoo’s freshwater turtle initiative, which is aligned with the Minnesota Zoo’s Center for Saving Wildlife Conservation Plan. The position will communicate project findings to scientific and general audiences and will help obtain funds for project needs.

Job duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Plan research and conservation activities benefitting Minnesota’s turtles, ensuring methods are feasible and scientifically sound and will effectively promote the conservation of turtles;
  • Conduct wildlife research activities on Minnesota’s turtles to increase scientific knowledge applicable to wildlife management. Implement conservation activities to help improve the long-term outlook of wildlife populations, in specific locations determined during planning processes;
  • Communicate project updates and findings to scientific and general public audiences so that information is incorporated into planning processes, knowledge is expanded, and the Zoo’s reputation as a conservation leader is enhanced;
  • Other Duties as assigned or apparent to ensure the smooth functioning of the department and its projects.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Master of Science degree from an accredited educational institution in Conservation Biology, Ecology, Wildlife Management, or other related field;
  • At least 1 year of experience conducting field work for research and/or conservation purposes;
  • Ability to conduct independent field work for research and/or conservation purposes in remote areas for extended periods of time;
  • Experience using commonly employed field techniques for studying wildlife, including radio telemetry, use of GPS tracking devices, and handling of wild animals;
  • Experience in empirical research design and methodology sufficient to plan high-quality conservation research projects;
  • Demonstrated ability to lead the publication of scientific manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals;
  • Proficiency with Geographic Information Systems software sufficient to analyze and interpret spatial data, including data obtained via radio telemetry or GPS tracking;
  • Proficiency with R statistical software sufficient to compile, summarize, plot, and analyze data using robust and appropriate statistical approaches;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint sufficient to prepare written communications, enter, organize, and plot data, and prepare/deliver engaging presentations;
  • Oral communication skills sufficient to create and deliver high-quality audience-appropriate presentations and on-camera communications to scientific and general audiences;
  • Written communication skills sufficient to prepare scientific manuscripts for high-quality journals as well as engaging and audience-appropriate text of various lengths for non-scientists;
  • Possession of current and valid driver’s license.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Ph.D. from an accredited educational institution in Conservation Biology, Ecology, Wildlife Management, or other related field;
  • Field experience with reptiles and amphibians, especially turtles;
  • Experience in setting up and maintaining camera traps;
  • Demonstrated success in securing grants of at least $5,000 in support of conservation/research projects;
  • Strong record of publishing conservation research in relatively high-impact peer-reviewed journals.

To Apply

Go to the Minnesota Zoo's jobs board and select this opportunity. The posting also may be found on the State of Minnesota careers page. Click “Apply” at the bottom of the page and create a profile under register now tab. Submit your application through the online portal. Please contact Seth Stapleton (seth [dot] stapleton [at] state [dot] mn [dot] us) with any questions regarding this position.             

Chelonian Keeper

Date Posted: 1 Feb 2018 (Show details)

Institution: Turtle Survival Alliance
Location: Cross, South Carolina
Closing date: 19 February 2018

The Turtle Survival Alliance works globally to conserve tortoises and freshwater turtles. With programs and projects in Belize, Colombia, Madagascar, and throughout Asia, the Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA) transforms passion for turtles into effective conservation action with a goal of zero turtle extinctions in the 21st Century.

The primary purpose of this position is to provide day to day animal husbandry and to implement all policies and procedures associated with the living animal collection at the Turtle Survival Center (TSC) in Cross, South Carolina. This position has the secondary responsibilities of assistance with horticulture, and general facility maintenance of the TSC. This position reports to the Facilities Manager/ Lead Keeper (FM):

  • Provide high standards of animal husbandry to a diverse group of critically endangered chelonians.
  • Provide husbandry coverage to non-primary areas of responsibility as required (i.e; vacations, illness, days off).
  • Open/close all areas (Primary and Secondary) at the TSC per policies and procedures in SOP
  • Monitor animal health.
  • Keep accurate animal records, including using the TRACKS database.
  • Maintain cleanliness of animal areas.
  • Assistance with the establishment of and the implementation of effective quarantine protocols to reduce the risk of disease transmission within the collection.
  • Propagate chelonians, including egg care and incubation.
  • Assist with veterinary care procedures as needed.
  • Perform basic animal medical treatments as needed.
  • General maintenance of facilities, upkeep of grounds and buildings.
  • Basic construction duties including plumbing, carpentry, and masonry.
  • Horticulture, particularly in animal areas.
  • Interact with interns, volunteers, students, visiting biologists, and guests.
  • Help to ensure security of the facility by adhering to best practices and security guidelines as they are developed and implemented.
  • Other duties as assigned. 


Good communication skills are essential for this position. Responsibilities include:

  • Communicating effectively with co-workers to address problems that may arise in a timely manner.
  • Representing the Turtle Survival Alliance at volunteer and outreach events as needed. 

Desired Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree in biology, zoology, or other related field. (Experience may be substituted for degree).
  • At least 2 years of experience with a diverse assemblage chelonian species.
  • Preference given to those with experience in construction.
  • Self-disciplined, highly motivated personality able to work independently as well as part of a team.
  • Ability to operate small to moderate machinery (mowers, chainsaws, tractor, etc.) while maintaining a safe environment for themselves and others.
  • Currently hold a valid state driver’s license with reliable transportation.
  • Must be able to work in a hot, humid climate for extended periods of time.
  • Must be able to accommodate a varying schedule with flexibility in mind.  

To Apply:

Please send a Curriculum Vitae and a cover letter including salary expectations to nhaislip [at] turtlesurvival [dot] org. Deadline to apply is Monday, February 19, 2018. 

Field Biologist in Herpetology

Date Posted: 1 Feb 2018 (Show details)

Institution: United States Geological Survey/Cherokee Nation Technologies
Location: Guam
Closing date: not provided

Cherokee Nation Technologies (CNT), in behalf of the US Geological Survey (USGS) Fort Collins Science Center, has an opening for a Biologist I, full-time position to join our team of research biologists on Guam. This team conducts ongoing research on the biology, control, and containment of the invasive nocturnal Brown Tree Snake on Guam, the Mariana Islands, and throughout the Pacific region.

The successful candidate will be provided with the unique opportunity to participate in ongoing research in a dynamic Pacific island field setting. He or she may also be trained as a member of the Rapid Response Team which could require multi-week trips to other (possibly remote) locations in search of snakes, including long hours and difficult conditions involving hot, humid and rainy inclement weather.

Travel to and from Guam is paid with a one year commitment.

Responsibilities include:

  • Fieldwork includes the hand capture of live snakes, collection of morphological data, preparation and maintenance of materials and equipment for experiments, preparation of study sites
  • Handling of live and dead animals (snake, lizards, rodents, and other vertebrates)
  • Field data collection occurs both during the day and at night.
  • Study site preparation will require the use of brush cutting equipment, power saws, and other equipment
  • Duties also include laboratory work and care of lab animals
  • The meticulous collection of field data and data entry is required while adhering to scientific and safety protocols


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Biology, Ecology, Environmental Education or related field
  • Valid driver’s license and clean driving record
  • Applicants must be in possession of a valid passport and be able to work legally in the U.S.
  • Excellent (corrected) eyesight, health and physical stamina, a strong work ethic and the ability to work on a research team are required
  • Ability to walk over rough terrain, carry up to 50 lbs. of equipment, tolerance of climatic extremes in mosquito and spider infested areas while maintaining a sense of humor
  • Demonstrated interest in working on a nocturnal species
  • Exceptional writing and communication skills as well as the ability to produce professional quality documents
  • Ability to pass an extensive background check for access to military property

Preference will be given to applicants who demonstrate a strong interest in academic applied research, a background in international field research, experience with snake handling, a desire to live in the tropics, and a comprehensive knowledge of Microsoft word processing and database applications.

To Apply:

Apply to Job # 11712 online at Applications should include a Cover Letter, CV/Resume, Date of Availability, Passport expiration date, and a list of References saved as a single Word or PDF document.

Applicants selected will be subject to a U.S. Government security investigation and must meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information.

About Cherokee Nation Technologies:

Since 2009, Cherokee Nation Technologies (CNT) has been serving government clients with time-tested solutions that increase client effectiveness through the intelligent use of technology. CNT’s expertise includes software and application services, network services, and business process services. The company is headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with a regional office in Ft. Collins, Colorado, and client locations nationwide. Wholly owned by the Cherokee Nation, CNT is part of the Cherokee Nation Businesses family of companies.

We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected Veteran status, gender identity and sexual orientation. If you’d like more information about your EEO rights as an applicant under the law, please visit the following two sites:

If you are an individual with a disability and require a reasonable accommodation to complete any part of the application process, or are limited in the ability or unable to access or use this online application process and need an alternative method for applying, you may e-mail CNB [dot] Compliance [at] cn-bus [dot] com for assistance. This email address is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the application process or status.

For Pay Transparency Non Discrimination provision:

Staff Serpentologist

Date Posted: 18 Jan 2018 (Show details)

Institution: BTG
Location: West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania
Closing date: not provided

BTG is a growing international specialist healthcare company. Our mission is to bring to market medical products that meet the needs of specialist healthcare physicians and their patients. We have an exciting opportunity for a Staff Serpentologist.

The Staff Serpentologist assists the other Serpentologist, the Senior Veterinary Medical Supervisor/Venom Analyst/EHS/AEW/QMS/RISK-Coordinator and the Assistant Manager/Herpetologist in the care and maintenance of pit viper specimens after an appropriate period of on-site training in the colonies of Crotalus s. scutulatus (CCS) and C. atrox (CCT) rattlesnakes and other pit viper colonies including C. adamanteus (CCD) and A.p. conanti (CAP). The incumbent functions under the established protocols for safety, security, venom extraction and processing and specimen husbandry.


  • Performs safety and security checks daily
  • Assists in care and maintenance of pit viper specimens as part of daily routine husbandry
  • Assists Senior Serpentologist with venom extraction and after completion of a satisfactory period of training may extract venom from specimens as a back-up position of the Senior Serpentologist
  • Assists the Senior Veterinary Technician Specialist with veterinary medical care and laboratory work as needed
  • Assists with maintaining a clean facility by cleaning cages, sweeping, moping, cleaning surfaces, waste removal and other activities as needed
  • Help maintain security, inventory, feeding and husbandry records and assist with other documentation and record keeping as needed
  • Utilize manual and/or bar coded specimen/cage data entry and data backup systems
  • Provides data input and storage in support of QA/QMS and EHS activities
  • Provide additional backup coverage when appropriate for routine duties of Senior Serpentologist and Senior Veterinary Technician Specialist


  • Minimum of 1-3 years of experience in animal husbandry, including a minimum of 1-2 years of experience working with reptiles
  • Experience and knowledge of Crotalidae, pit viper biology and behavior
  • Bachelors’ degree or certificate of advanced education
  • Communication: Exemplary interpersonal communication skills, both oral and written
  • Team Work: Demonstrated effectiveness working independently and in groups in a collegial manner, including cross functional teams and internal/external networking
  • Integrity: Highest level of integrity. Deals with others in an open, honest and respectful manner. Is able to build trust in all interactions by displaying consistent high standards of ethical and professional practices. Integrity by example
  • Flexibility: Remains open minded and changes opinions on the basis of new information. Performs a wide variety of tasks and changes focus quickly as demands change. Manages transitions effectively from task to task. Deals constructively with unresolved situations, changes, delays or unexpected events
  • Knowledge: Has the required knowledge and skills to do his/her job to the standard. Evaluates new information and tools as potential solutions to problems. Makes use of and improves on new knowledge. Develops his/her own knowledge base and stays informed of current work trends. Able to apply new concepts
  • Leadership: Communicates information and ideas in a way that motivates others. Assumes a role of authority as necessary; advocates new ideas, even when risk is involved. Leads by example and able to delegate responsibility and empower others to make decisions. Provides constructive feedback to others. Follows performance standards and confronts negative attitudes
  • Organizational Skills: Manages multiple tasks efficiently. Determines work priorities in a meaningful and practical way. Uses agreed to goals and objectives to guide actions. Organizes and schedules resources and tasks. Controls own workload time management and time reports
  • Problem Solving: Takes action in solving problems while exhibiting judgment and understanding of the issues. Uses reason when dealing with uncertain or emotional subjects. Makes difficult decisions and follows through. Maintains high standards of work despite pressing deadlines. Undertakes additional responsibilities and responds to situations as they arise with or without supervision
  • Accountability: Takes personal responsibility for decisions and actions. Keeps promises and delivers on commitments
  • Continuous Learning: Encourages others to generate new ideas, share knowledge and adapt best practices. Learns from successes, failures and mistakes
  • Delivery: Strives to deliver on all commitments on time and to the highest standard. Has a 'Can Do' attitude

To Apply:

Apply online at

BTG is an equal opportunity employer. We offer competitive compensation & benefit packages, challenging opportunities and a culture of working together in a supportive way built on our strong foundation of values.

Invasive Reptile and Amphibian Biologist

Date Posted: 13 Jan 2018 (Show details)

Institution: University of Florida
Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Closing date: 31 March 2018

The University of Florida, Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation at the Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, Davie, Florida (the Croc Docs) is seeking a an enthusiastic individual who will work with scientists from the University of Florida as well as managers from state and federal agencies. The start date is as soon as ideal candidate is identified and available. The salary is $14-18/hour, commensurate with experience.

Primary duties include herpetofaunal surveys, radio telemetry, and removal of nonnative species (including Argentine black & white tegus, Nile monitors, spectacled caiman, and Burmese and northern African pythons). Other duties include spotlight surveys and captures of American alligators and American crocodiles, boat and vehicle maintenance, and data management. Biologist will be expected to work 40 hours a week, including some nights, and must commit to at least one year of work. Position may be extended depending on performance and funding. To learn about our lab and current projects, please visit our website ( or facebook page (

Required Qualifications:

  • Possess degree in ecology, biology, wildlife, environmental science, or related field;
  • Knowledge of Florida's ecosystems as well as native and nonnative herpetofauna;
  • Excellent communication skills and accurate data recording;
  • Possession or ability to obtain a valid Florida driver's license;
  • Experience navigating off-trail with aid of GPS and compass;
  • Experience operating vehicles with 4WD.

Preferred Skills:

  • Maintain work quality and positive attitude in challenging, muddy, rocky, remote settings in hot and humid weather with biting insects, large reptiles, and venomous snakes;
  • Experience identifying herpetofauna present in southern Florida;
  • Experience using and downloading data from Garmin GPS devices;
  • Experience triangulating and homing to transmittered wildlife;
  • Ability to work independently and with others in a fast-paced environment;
  • Experience maintaining and operating small skiffs, jon boats, kayaks;
  • First aid/CPR training is helpful but not required.

To Apply:

Please email letter of interest, resume or CV, and names and contact information for three references Mike Rochford at thecrocdocs [at] gmail [dot] com and use subject heading “Invasive Reptile & Amphibian Biologist.” 

The closing date is March 31, 2018. 

Burmese python coiled on the ground