Lead Temporary Field Technician

  • NEON
  • Fitchburg, MA, USA
  • Feb 13, 2020
Biology - Ecology Fisheries - Marine Science - Aquatic Biology Water Quality Wildlife - Endangered Species - Biodiversity

Job Description


We are currently seeking Lead Temporary Field Technicians. These positions are located in Fitchburg, MA.

Individuals are responsible for their own housing and transportation to primary work location.


NEON’s Domain 01 encompasses all of New England and includes two terrestrial and one aquatic site. The Domain Support Facility is located in Fitchburg, MA.

Temporary Field Technicians will support field data collection using fauna (i.e., small mammal, beetle, ticks, mosquitoes), flora (i.e., plant diversity, herbaceous biomass, leaf area index, vegetation structure, litterfall, plant phenology, soils), and/or aquatics (i.e., water chemistry, reaeration, discharge, macroinvertebrates, fish, plants, algae, microbes, sediment chemistry) protocols, and/or perform instrumentation maintenance.  Staffing in particular areas will be dependent on past experience, interest, and work needed in the Domain. The field season will be from approximately April/May through October.

Harvard Forest in central Massachusetts is our core site and the Bartlett Experimental Forest within the White Mountains of New Hampshire is our relocatable site. Terrain at these sites is heavily forested, and varies from rolling hills and wetlands at Harvard Forest to steep mountain slopes in the Bartlett Experimental Forest.  White-tailed deer, moose, and black bears are found at both sites, as well as, a wide variety of birds, small mammals, and amphibians. New England summers are relatively mild, with temperatures rarely rising above 90 degrees, albeit with fairly high humidity.  Mosquitoes are numerous and omnipresent. Ticks are also common and carry a variety of diseases including Lyme disease.

Field technicians will need to be flexible in the hours that they are available, as some days will start before dawn, and end after dusk. Bartlett, NH is 3 hours from the main office, and overnight stays of up to a week are required for sampling in this site. A field house will be provided for overnight stays while sampling is being performed in Bartlett. Temporary employees will spend the majority of the time in the field, with the remaining time spent in the domain office for lab work and data entry.

Fitchburg is a former mill town in the initial stages of economic revitalization. Boston is 1 hour away and there is a commuter rail to Boston a short walk from the office. Fitchburg is a 45-minute drive from some of the best climbing in New England and only 20-minutes to a plethora of hiking opportunities. The area has summer festivals a plenty and a great craft brewery scene.


  • Performs and supervises field assignments in a variety of conditions (e.g., weather, terrain, diverse assigned biomes, etc.).
  • Provides training to seasonal and temporary field personnel.
  • Follows established, standardized field procedures for sample collection; records data from sample collection; and processes samples.
  • Records activities and completed work according to Field Operations protocol.
  • Follows safety and Field Operations policy and procedures.
  • Reports issues with implementation of procedures and coordinates resolution with manager and technicians.
  • Assists with routine administrative duties, special projects and other duties as assigned.
  • Carries, moves and lifts field supplies (pack weighing up to 40 lbs.) to assigned field site (which involves diverse and uneven terrain).


  • High School Diploma.  May require an Associate's degree or experience as a fully qualified Temporary Field Technician with one (1) – two (2) years of related experience
  • Knowledge of best practices for accurate and repeatable field and laboratory measurements across multiple scientific disciplines. Complex and variable systems require judgment and independent decision-making abilities
  • Technical skills using best practices in field and ability to identify aquatic or terrestrial flora and fauna to genus and species.
  • Due to the limited number of positions in each domain, technicians must be willing and able to learn and perform procedures and methods outside of the primary responsibility.
  • Willingness to perform maintenance and field sampling outdoors in sparsely populated, remote locations, with distances ranging from 1/2 hour to 6 hours from the domain office. Overnight travel, hiking off trail, and wading in water are typical in most locations.
  • Ability and willingness to work varied field operations schedules (up to 12+ hours per day), including split-shift, part-time, pre-dawn early mornings, evenings and weekends.
  • Ability to hike off trail, long distances, on uneven terrain, at remote locations, in all types of weather, carrying packs weighing up to 40lbs.
  • Ability to work on instrument towers ranging in height from 26 feet to 240 feet and at altitudes of up to 11,000 feet (depending on assigned Domain), involving the ability to ascend and descend multiple flights of stairs.
  • Ability to withstand exposure to fumes, dust, and noise. Field work may require frequent exposure to toxicodendrons (e.g. poison ivy and poison oak), ticks, biting insects and other natural hazards.
  • Proficiency with MS Office Suite (e.g., Excel, Word).
  • Ability to follow written and verbal instructions.
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Strong work ethic and enthusiasm. 

Previous NEON Project field experience will be highly considered 

Applicants must have authorization to work in the United States. 

Employment is contingent on background screen, drug screen, motor vehicle records check and physical. 

Must possess a current and valid State issued driver’s license with insurable Department of Motor vehicle record (parking violations, minor driving offenses excluded) as determined by Battelle’s insurance provider.

Remember to say you found this opportunity at EnvironmentalCareer.com!


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