Fisheries Biological Technician
Consolidated Safety Services - New York

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Full-time Fisheries Biological technician needed to support the USGS’s Great Lakes Science Center/Lake Ontario Biological Station in Oswego, NY. The mission of the Great Lakes Science Center is to meet the nation’s need for scientific information for restoring, enhancing, managing, and protecting living resources and their habitat in the Great Lakes Basin ecosystem.


The biological technician will be working onboard 21 ft and 70ft research vessels assisting in gillnetting, bottom trawling, hydroacoustics, and limnological sampling. Technician assistance will be required for 7 monthly 2 day cruises and may be required for portions of cruises running from 8-10 days. The technician may be required to live onboard the 70 ft. research vessel during longer 8-10 day cruises and assist in all facets of fishery and limnological sample collection and processing, as well as participate in shared housekeeping duties. The technician will also assist at the laboratory, where further sample processing, fish aging, data collection and databasing tasks will occur. Specific duties will include:
  • Assisting in conducting field studies and surveys to collect fisheries and limnological data and/or specimens to support scientific studies.
  • Participating aboard 21 ft and 70 ft research vessels for approximately 15-50 days per year in the collection of a fishery and limnological samples.
  • Operating small boats up to 21 ft in length including trailering to and from sampling locations and following all field sampling SOPs and established safety protocols.
  • Assisting in experimental fishing with gill nets and trawls. Identifying, sorting, and cataloguing fish specimens.
  • Assisting in limnological sampling using plankton nets, ponar dredges and integrated water samplers. Identifying, sorting, and cataloguing limnological specimens (e.g., water, invertebrates, chl-a, etc.).
  • Preparing samples for storage and transporting samples from the field to the lab.
  • Preparing fishery and limnological samples for analysis.
  • Assisting in obtaining physical and biological data from fish and limnological samples; assisting in the examination and analysis of field collections of biological material.
  • Maintaining accurate and up to date records of data obtained on samples collected in the field and on samples processed in the lab.
  • Operating laboratory equipment (microscopes, balances, digital imaging systems, etc.).
  • Identifying and enumerating zooplankton samples.
  • Assisting in collection, preparation and interpretation of fish aging structures.
  • Tabulating, summarizing, and graphing data obtained from samples.
  • Entering data in the USGS Oracle database.

  • Bachelor’s degree (or higher) with a combination of education and experience in fisheries science, limnology or aquatic ecology is required.
  • Coursework such as mathematics, statistics, fisheries biology, limnology, fisheries taxonomy, invertebrate taxonomy, zoology, wildlife biology, and fisheries or wildlife management is highly desirable.
  • Knowledge and proven ability in the basic principles, protocols, methods, and procedures of fishery biology in order to carry out, alone or as a team member, a variety of common technical duties and/or to resolve a range of irregular or problem situations when performing such assignments.
  • Knowledge and proven ability to assess the quality and validity of readings and measurements taken, tests executed, observations made, work completed, samples collected, etc.
  • Knowledge and proven ability to understand and relate the significance of results and assess and report on the characteristics and quality of the data and data source in relation to project objectives.
  • Knowledge and proven ability to operate complex, but typical, laboratory equipment or systems, that may contain numerous components or parts, and that must be calibrated and synchronized to achieve desired results such as microscopes, pipettes, centrifuges, spectrophotometers, balances, pH and other meters, and equipment/systems used in highly specialized analysis of limnological and biological samples.
  • Knowledge and proven ability of data management tools.
  • Individuals who perform crewmember duties on board USGS large research vessels will be required to meet certain medical and physical qualifications prior to on-boarding.
  • Must possess a current, valid driver’s license; must complete and comply with all required training related to operating a government vehicle.
  • Must be available to start work on or about April 1, 2013.
  • Processing of a National Agency Check and Inquiries (NACI) and fingerprinting will be required.

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