NDOW Rangeland Assessment Technician – The Great Basin Institute

Reno, Nevada

The Great Basin Institute’s Ecological Monitoring Program focuses on collecting monitoring data to inform conservation and management of natural, cultural, and recreational resources in the Intermountain West, while providing emerging professionals opportunities to begin or enhance their careers. This program provides hands-on experience with rangeland surveys, terrestrial vegetation monitoring, and field data collection.

One component of the program works in cooperation with the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) to implement NDOW’s Vegetation Health Assessment (VHA) program. The goal of the VHA program is to provide ecological monitoring data to inform conservation planning and adaptive management decisions. This data is used by resource specialists and land managers to inform future resource management decisions focused on protecting Nevada’s biodiversity and restoring productive terrestrial ecosystems to support wildlife.

For the 2024 field season, GBI is recruiting three Rangeland Assessment Technicians to work with GBI and NDOW staff to implement novel rapid ecological assessment methods to evaluate restoration treatment success. Under the supervision of a Project Manager, technicians will characterize vegetation and site condition on several pilot post-wildfire sites primarily located in eastern Nevada on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands.

During the first week of training, the typical schedule is 5 days on (Monday-Friday) and 2 days off. During field work, car camping for 8 day “hitches” (Wednesday-Wednesday) in remote locations will be required, followed by 6 days off (Thursday-Tuesday). At the end of the field season, there is one week of office work, primarily focused on data QC and season wrap-up.

Field work includes:

  • Maintaining safety awareness and practices;
  • Extensive 4×4 driving on unmaintained roads in an agency work truck;
  • Navigating off-trail, hiking up to 10 miles to sampling sites;
  • Establishing or revisiting sampling plots and transects;
  • Collecting vegetation data (including photo-points, species inventory, ocular cover of vegetation and soils, and species density);
  • Making qualitative landscape condition assessments for treatment success;
  • Identifying plants to species using field identification skills and dichotomous keys; and
  • Applying extensive quality assurance and quality control data checks.

Additional duties include:

  • Regular communication with GBI support staff and agency staff;
  • Participation in GBI and agency trainings;
  • Maintaining organization and condition of provided gear; and
  • Using Field Maps and Survey123 software to collect field data.

Contract Timeline:

• 21 weeks from March to August
– Tentative Start Date: March 11th


Based out of NDOW Field Office in Reno, Nevada
• Crews will travel across Northern Nevada to monitoring sites on BLM lands in the Ely District.

Compensation and Benefits:Total approximate biweekly compensation before taxes:
– Office: $1,590.00 (approximate hourly equivalent $19.88)
– Average Field: $1,842.00 (approximate hourly equivalent $23)

Compensation Breakdown:

  • $1,440.00 bi-weekly salary
  • $150 biweekly housing stipend; untaxed, used at applicant’s discretion as housing is not provided
  • $36 per diem for every night camped in the field (up to 7 units in an 8-day work week)
  • Paid health insurance including vision and dental at no cost; monthly premiums fully paid by GBI
  • Paid state holidays
  • Paid personal leave

Job Qualifications:

Technical requirements:

  • Experience, education, or a combination of both in botany and/or range management to meet the following:
  • Bachelor’s degree in botany, ecology, or other natural resources with coursework in botany or plant sciences (or currently enrolled); AND/OR
  • A minimum of 1 year of field data collection identifying plants, preferred
  • Field botany experience preferred;
  • Experience conducting vegetation surveys using various monitoring protocols, including standard rangeland monitoring protocols, photo plots, and site observations, preferred;
  • Ability to collect and manage data of a high degree of quality;
  • Ability to read, interpret and navigate using topographic maps;
  • Experience navigating and collecting coordinates with hand-held GPS units; and
  • Experience safely operating agency 4WD trucks on paved and unpaved roads, often in remote areas on unimproved roads;

Additional requirements:

  • Familiarity with native and invasive plants of the sampling area and associated natural resource issues, preferred;
  • Willingness and ability to productively work in a fast-paced, dynamic setting while consistently maintaining high performance standards through a strong work and team ethic to accomplish goals;
  • Possess a valid, state-issued driver’s license and clean driving record;
  • Ability to communicate effectively with team members, program staff, and a diverse public;
  • Ability to accurately complete administrative tasks on time i.e. timesheet, paperwork, etc;
  • Possess or learn excellent organizational skills;
  • Familiarity with best practices for field safety and Leave No Trace principles;
  • Experience in and willingness to spend up to seven consecutive nights camping with no amenities in remote locations;
  • Willingness to work irregular hours (e.g., early mornings, long days); and
  • Ability to work in harsh and rapidly changing environments, work in all types of weather conditions, traverse uneven terrain for up to 10 miles, carry upwards of 40 pounds in a backpack, and otherwise maintain good physical condition.

Click here for more information and to apply.

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