American Conservation Experience - EPIC
  • US Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Sudbury, MA, USA
  • $600/week
  • Individual Placement
  • EPIC

The ACE member will be accommodated in provided agency housing at no cost for the duration of the term.

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is seeking 1 Biological Member to contribute to wetland and upland habitat and rare species monitoring and management projects alongside Eastern Massachusetts National Wildlife Refuge Complex Staff. During this term, the ACE member will support inventory, monitoring, and management of amphibians and reptiles, migratory birds, and invasive species.

For more information about ACE, please visit:

Start Date: March 28, 2022

End Date: September 16, 2022

**25-week commitment required**

Location: Eastern Massachusetts National Wildlife Refuge Complex, headquartered in Sudbury, MA

Situated along the Atlantic Flyway in Massachusetts, the Eastern Massachusetts National Wildlife Refuge Complex is comprised of eight ecologically diverse refuges. The eight individual refuges include inland and coastal wetlands such as rivers, vernal pools, barrier beachs, and saltmarshes, as well as diverse native uplands, that provide important habitat for migratory birds, mammals, plants, reptiles and amphibians, fish, and invertebrates. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages these areas to conserve and protect a diversity of native wildlife habitats and species. The refuge complex encompasses several federally threatened and endangered species, numerous state listed species, the only federally designated Wilderness Area in southern New England, and a National Wild and Scenic River.

For more information about the Eastern Massachusetts NWR Complex, and the Refuges within the Complex, please visit:

For more information regarding the ACE EPIC Program, please visit:

Age Requirements: Funding for many ACE positions is provided by a federal program designed specifically for the employment of youth and young adults and therefore is subject to minimum and maximum age requirements of 18-30 (35 for veterans).

This position requires ACE or FWS vehicle operation in the performance of the duties and therefore the minimum age to be considered is 21.

Work Schedule: Duties will often be carried out between 8 am - 4:30 pm, typically 5 days/week. (5-8s). Bi-weekly totals will usually not exceed 80 hours, but may during the busiest months of May and June. In these instances, extra hours worked can be taken off later in the season. A flexible work schedule is required, and involves work performed outside of normal work hours, including late nights, early mornings, weekends and holidays. Time off may be granted and requests should be directed to ACE and the FWS for approval.

Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute approximately 40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $600/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly. Additionally a travel stipend of $500 will be distributed.

Housing: The ACE member will be accommodated in provided agency housing at no cost for the duration of the term.

AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 900-hour AmeriCorps Education Award ($3,097.50) upon successful completion of service hours. Additional enrollment and volunteer service is required.

Public Land Corps (PLC) Non-competitive Hiring Authority: Members serving on this project may be eligible to receive a Department of the Interior (DOI) PLC non-competitive hiring authority certificate upon completion of their term of service. Eligible members must meet standard requirements of completing at least 640 hours (16 weeks at 40 hours/week) and utilize their certificate when applying for qualifying federal positions within 2 years of receipt and before the age of 31. More information can be provided upon request.

Position Description:

This individual placement is meant to facilitate personal growth and professional development and promotes exposure to land management agencies and networking with agency professionals. This could include gaining experience in a variety of conservation fields and/or shadowing different work groups.

Primary Duties include:

  • 60% of the member's time will be spent focused on inventory, monitoring, and management of amphibians and reptiles and wetland habitats, including:
    • ongoing research and management for Blanding's turtles and northern red-bellied cooters which likely involves hoop trapping, radio telemetry, nest searching and monitoring, and hatchling collection.
    • ongoing vernal pool monitoring, which includes egg mass counts and dip net surveys.
    • wetland habitat restoration, management, and mapping.
  • 30% of the member's time will be spent helping with other biological work which may include:
    • coastal nesting waterbird and migrating waterfowl surveys.
    • vegetation surveys, including mapping of invasive species.
    • controlling invasive plant species (especially water chestnut and American lotus).
  • 10% of the member's time will be spent interacting with the public, entering data, maintaining facilities, and conducting routine office work.

Physical Requirements: This position requires physical exertion such as walking long distances over wet and rough or uneven surfaces while carrying up to 40 lbs., bending, crouching, stooping, lifting or reaching. Hand and finger dexterity and physical coordination may involve fine and precise procedures, delicate adjustments or exact measurements. This position also requires frequent canoe use, and wading in chest deep water and mud, including through challenging wetland conditions.

Environmental Conditions/Hazards: The Biological Member may encounter environmental conditions/hazards including extreme heat or cold, rain, rocky terrain, flooded roads and ditches, swamp or wetland conditions that are challenging to navigate by canoe or in waders, biting insects (mosquitos and ticks), and poison ivy. The member is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/members or resources. Most of the work is conducted within 90 minutes of the headquarters office in Sudbury, MA, but some overnight travel and camping may be necessary.

Vehicle and Equipment Use/Safety: If a vehicle is required for the accomplishment of the duties, one will be provided by the FWS or ACE. In the rare event that a vehicle is not available, mileage will be reimbursed through the travel stipend. Any tools required for the accomplishment of the duties will be provided by the FWS. Use of personal protective equipment (PPE), typically provided by the FWS, will be mandatory for any activity that requires it. Strict adherence to FWS and ACE equipment training, certification, and safety protocols is required.



  • Willing and able to represent ACE and the USFWS in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner.
  • Ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
  • U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • A valid driver's license and an insurable driving record (documentation to be provided upon request).
  • Willing to undergo and must pass required criminal history checks.
  • Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.


  • Competitive applicants for this position can hold or be pursuing a bachelor's degree in wildlife biology, botany, natural resource management, or other related discipline appropriate to this position.
  • Knowledge of radio telemetry use and application, turtle trapping techniques, bird and vegetation sampling techniques, GPS, and GIS.
  • Knowledge of, or some exposure to, identification of reptiles, amphibians, songbirds, and non-native invasive plants in the northeastern US.
  • Ability and willingness to work with the public in a professional manner, work independently and as part of a team, work in challenging field conditions, learn new field techniques.
  • Ability and willingness to be flexible and adaptable to changing field conditions, schedules, and priorities.
  • Deep interest in applied conservation management, reptiles and amphibians, collaborative work with conservation partners.

To Apply: Please submit your resume, unofficial academic transcripts, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and experience, and contact information for three professional/academic references to the online application page for this position here: ***Academic transcripts are required for verification of related coursework and professional development purposes, as opposed to evaluating prior academic performance.

NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact ACE EPIC USFWS Division Support Specialist, Claire Barnwell,, (585) 484-7626.

Vaccination Requirement: ACE Members must verify that they are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 by the time they start their term or request a medical or religious exemption.

EEO: American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.

American Conservation Experience - EPIC
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