Florida softshell turtle, Apalone ferox, photo by J.D. Willson

Artificial Reef Scientist I (77901167)

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Tallahassee, Florida
Closing Date
14 March 2018

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Division of Marine Fisheries Management, Artificial Reef Sub-section is seeking a research scientist. This position is with FWC’s Division of Marine Fisheries Management, Artificial Reef Sub-section. The selected candidate will work closely with other Division Biological Scientists and a Biological Administrator to manage grants and contracts for artificial reef development and monitoring primarily in northwest Florida (Pensacola through Mexico Beach), including compiling, analyzing and interpreting biological data, implementing assessments of artificial reef habitats and preparing technical reports.

The candidate will also conduct human use monitoring surveys, in situ visual fish census, and documentation using underwater photography/videography; assist in mobilizing and demobilizing for all field operations; assist with statistical analyses of project data and the production of summary tables and graphics; and assist in report preparation, including figures, tables and maps. The person selected for this position will be required to regularly interact with individuals from within and outside the agency, as well as the general public.

This is an OPS (Other Personal Services) position. It offers limited benefits and no moving expenses. Occasional overtime hours may be required. Salary is $17 - $20 per hour, depending on experience, up to 40 hours per week with schedule variations based on season and workload; some overtime required; and partial benefits.Hours worked over 40 per week, Friday to Thursday, are considered overtime and are paid @ 1.5 times the normal rate.

This position is funded by a 2-year grant. Continued employment is subject to annual renewals. 


  • Assist with managing artificial reef construction and monitoring contracts with local coastal governments.
  • Develop and maintain effective working relationships with other agency managers, state and federal regulatory staff, local coastal government managers, media, public and affected artificial reef stakeholders.
  • Serve on the Division of Marine Fisheries Management Dive Team to assess and develop reports on the performance/compliance of previously deployed artificial reef projects, and assist with other Division dive activities as needed.
  • Assist with maintaining accuracy of the FWC artificial reef deployment database.
  • Operate/maintain project equipment including vehicles, boats, motors, trailers, and other field sampling equipment.
  • Process and/or approve vendor invoices and warrants for payment of goods received or services rendered in a timely and accurate manner.
  • Adhere to the provisions and requirements for Section 215.422.F.S., related State Comptroller's rules and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation invoice processing and warrant distribution procedures.
  • Develop visual presentations and speak at public meetings and workshops when required.
  • Courteously assist Commission constituents to resolve questions or problems and matters related to the Commission or fish and wildlife conservation.
  • Seek to garner public support for agency objectives and programs by serving Florida's citizens in a positive and proactive manner.

Minimum qualifications:  

A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with a major in one of the biological sciences. Major in marine sciences preferred. SCUBA certification.

Preferred Knowledge, Sklills and Abilities:

  • Ability to work with the general public, public officials, regulatory agencies and local governments and to conduct communications in a tactful and courteous manner.

  • Knowledge of personal computers and related software (spreadsheet, database, data analysis, digital photo/video processing programs, etc.).

  • Skilled in SCUBA diving (advanced open water certification or higher preferred) and ability to obtain AAUS scientific diving certification through the Commission’s certification process.

  • Ability to work effectively in a team situation with one or more individuals in a strenuous field situation over a multi-day period and demonstrate ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships in both a close-quarters field working environment and an office environment.

  • Ability to operate and trailer vessels up to 26’ in length.

  • Ability to successfully work independently on projects that involve coordination, monitoring, problem solving skills.

  • Ability to communicate effectively, orally, graphically, and in writing including production of formal technical and annual reports.

  • Ability to organize and prioritize workloads.

  • Ability to think critically and develop logical responses to problems.

  • Ability to identify Florida coastal marine fishes and major reef associated invertebrate taxa.

  • Ability to endure long work hours and extensive periods of time in the field.

  • Must be able to perform strenuous physical activities under arduous conditions (e.g. inclement weather, rough water), lift heavy equipment up to 50 lbs., and participate in heavy physical exertion while swimming or diving.

  • Must be willing and able to travel and work some overtime hours including occasional weekends, and weeknights.

Licensure and Certification:

  • Must possess and maintain a valid Florida driver’s license
  • Must possess open water SCUBA certification from a nationally recognized agency.
  • NITROX diving certification and current CPR and First Aid certifications required within the probationary period.

To Apply:

Apply online at jobs.myflorida.com (position 77901167). In addition to submitting a completed state application via People First and completing the qualifying questions, applicants are required to submit a current résumé and cover letter highlighting their qualifications and interest in the position.

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