Wildlife Data Management Assistant

Expected Dates
August 25, 2014 to August 23, 2015
Sonoran Desert Network
Position ID
The US Fish and Wildlife System’s Natural Resource Program Center is collaborating with the National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program to create a centralized repository for compiling, organizing and serving U.S. FWS information.  This repository will mirror the Data Store application with the NPS’ Integration of Resource Management Application portal.  The Service Catalog (ServCat) is a centralized web application that compiles documents and organized legacy datasets such as reports, surveys, databases, geospatial data and images.  The intern will facilitate timely data management and archival of the historical sighting data and the first 4 years of data generated from the whooping crane survey protocol.  This intern will be responsible for organizing the databases for each year’s surveys, finalizing them in compatible formats, assisting with final data analyses and creating metadata.  These datasets will be assigned digital object identifiers (DOI) which are essential for the management of information.  These are important final steps needed to support and complete the data management architecture associated with long-term monitoring of whooping cranes.

There are two whooping crane datasets the intern will be working on, historical sighting (1950-2010) and those generated from the new technique (2011-2014).  Historical sightings of whooping cranes were collected starting in the 1950’s.  Region 2 I&M digitized these historical sightings in 2011-2012.  In an effort to make this dataset available to the public it necessitates due diligence to ensure the digitation process is error checked and thorough metadata produced prior to public release.

Region 2 personnel recently completed a monitoring protocol for whooping cranes wintering on and around Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.  This protocol is consistent with the Survey Protocol Handbook.  A current product of the whooping crane survey is a spatially-explicit model of abundance based on rudimentary habitat categories derived from the Texas Ecological Systems Classification (TESC) project.  More sophisticated remotely sensed data (i.e., the MODIS Phenology product, LiDAR) are available and some are updated annually (unlike the TESC data).  The intern will assist with the testing of other remotely sensed data to develop improved spatially-explicit maps of abundance which are useful for conservation planning efforts such as land protection planning, policy decisions, and decision analyses.  Final data sets will be uploaded to ServCat.

The intern will also be working with camera trapping data used to estimate and monitor animal abundance and occurrence.  Both NPS and FWS I&M Programs consider camera trapping a high priority technique for monitoring faunal abundance and occurrence.  Timely, organized data management for camera trapping projects is essential for their success.  The intern will finalize databases for at least two camera trapping projects in the Southwest.
  • The position will be based in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the US FWS regional office.
  • Geographic Information Science (GIS), Database management
  • New Mexico, offers an abundance of recreational opportunities from world class whitewater rafting, fly fishing, kayaking, golfing, hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, ballooning, wind surfing, cycling and even scuba diving.
  • Yes
Main Area of Focus
Wildlife Mgmt
Education, Training & Skills Expected
degree minor or extensive experience
Earth Sciences
some coursework or experience
Resource Management
some coursework or experience
Computer Science
competent with supervision
Data Entry
competent without supervision
Field Research
some experience
some experience