American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
  • Bureau of Reclamation
  • Fresno, CA, USA
  • Internship
  • EPIC

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a Nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation's Fisheries and Wildlife Resources Group is seeking Two Fisheries Biology Interns to assist with juvenile Chinook salmon monitoring in the San Joaquin River near Fresno, California. 

Start Date:  December 1, 2019

End Date:   May 30, 2020

Location: Fresno, CA and surrounding San Joaquin River Valley

Project Website:  To learn more about the US Bureau of Reclamation, please visit:

To learn more about the San Joaquin River Restoration Program's (SJRRP) comprehensive long-term efforts to restore flows to the San Joaquin River and restore a self-sustaining Chinook salmon fishery, please visit

To learn more about ACE EPIC Internship Program, please visit:

Compensation: a living allowance of $750/week for food and incidental expenses, paid bi-weekly. 

Internship Duration:  The duration of the internship will be dependent on stochastic environmental conditions and the number of work hours may range between 35-45 hours/week. The majority of work related activities will occur between 0700 and 1700. However, some weekend work and hours outside of a normal business day (early morning and late-evening) will be required. Weekly work schedules will not be standardized, and may be adjusted based on project needs and priorities.

Duties for this position:

  • Primary duties will include assisting with fish sampling, habitat and water quality monitoring, and maintenance of multiple rotary screw traps on the mainstem San Joaquin River downstream of Friant Dam.
  • Interns will assist with fish husbandry, fish marking, and rotary screw trap efficiency testing (mark-capture experiments). This includes maintenance and repair of all equipment necessary for these duties.
  • In addition to these primary duties, interns may be asked to participate in other fisheries monitoring activities on the San Joaquin River, which may require some minimal travel (< 2 hr) for short durations not to exceed two weeks
  • Participate in habitat management and monitoring
  • Maintain accurate and detailed field records and enter data promptly and accurately
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:  Applicants must have suitable education: equivalent to completion of two years of college with a minimum of 10 semester hours in biological or chemical sciences, or suitable experience: one year of experience studying or monitoring fish or wildlife populations and habitats. Candidates must read, write, and speak English at a level required for successful job performance; follow directions and practice ethics of professional conduct; maintain professional working relationships with clients, land owners, and other groups/agencies; and collect, record, and organize data and field observations efficiently and accurately. Must have willingness to work irregular hours, including weekends and holidays, to travel in performing work, and to do routine work with an interest to learn.

Special Physical Requirements: Candidates must be proficient swimmers, able to lift and carry objects exceeding 40 lbs for short distances (< 1 mi) and durations (< 15 min), hike in waders up and down hills for distances not exceeding 1 mile, and must be willing to work in inclement weather (i.e., cold and rain) and in adverse conditions (i.e., outside, in the water) on rough and unstable terrain. 


  • Knowledge of fisheries, wildlife populations, and natural sciences
  • Ability to work independently as well as part of small teams
  • Writing skills with an understanding of basic grammar, punctuation, and spelling
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to effectively communicate with supervisor and coworkers
  • Flexibility
  • Ability to work in very hot, humid, and buggy conditions
  • Willing to work varying hours including before sunrise or at night
  • Ability to record accurate field data
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Office software
  • Basic mechanical skills
  • Ability and willingness to undergo a Federal criminal background check
  • Must have a validdriver's license, be 21 years of age to drive a vehicle, provide documentation of a clean driving record, and have a personal vehicle (required)
  • Must take all measures possible to ensure the safety of yourself and others and understand all safety precautions involved


  • Education in fisheries, wildlife ecology, management, or conservation science
  • Experience conducting aquatic and biological surveys
  • Experience in fisheries monitoring
  • Basic GPS and GIS skills

Additional Desirable Qualifications:  Ability to accurately identify fishes of the San Joaquin River and a basic understanding of general fisheries biology concepts and water quality monitoring equipment (e.g., YSI Multiparameter Sonde, Marsch-McBirney Flow Meter, Hach Turbidimeter) operation and maintenance is beneficial, but not critical to these positions.  In addition, selected interns will be expected to meet the necessary requirements and training to drive a government vehicle, and must review and sign project specific job hazard analyses prior to working. 

Position Risks: Data collection efforts, and the necessity for these positions, is largely dependent on suitable environmental conditions that will permit juvenile salmon sampling, as well as successful spawning and production of hatchery reared and released adult salmon in the San Joaquin River. Juvenile salmon monitoring will not occur if environmental conditions (i.e., river flows) are not suitable for sampling gear or pose a safety risk or if hatchery released adult salmon fail to spawn successfully.

Further Notes on the internship:

The applicant must be willing to represent ACE and the USBR in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. ACE reserves the right to require drug testing.

This position is subject to close at any time.

To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with 3 professional references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on our website here: 

NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received.  If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact ACE EPIC BLM Member Manager, Erin Mounce, at 

American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
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