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Seasonal Assistant, Bowland

Reference number: A5140119

Location: Lancashire

The RSPB is looking for a skilled and dedicated Field Officer to help monitor and protect birds of prey on the United Utilities Estate in the Bowland Fells. Located in Lancashire, the Bowland Fells are designated as a SSSI and SPA for their blanket bog and upland heath habitats and for the suite of exciting species that breed there.

The focus of this role is on monitoring and protecting Hen Harriers, Merlins, Peregrines and Short-eared Owls. Historically, Bowland was at one time the most important area in England for Hen Harriers, and the RSPB is working with Unitied Utilities and other partners to restore the population of this species to its SPA designation and back towards its historical population level. Excellent field skills and experience of monitoring and protecting upland birds of prey (including nest finding) are essential, particularly of the four named focal species. You will also have a thorough understanding of bird of prey ecology and the challenges associated with bird of prey conservation in the uplands, and apply this knowledge to your work accordingly.

Reporting to the Project Officer, you will work with him to organise the field work schedule following best practice monitoring protocols as well as health and safety protocols and have the leadership skills required to oversee the project in the event of his absence.

Working in a small tight-knit team, during a fast-paced breeding season, excellent comunication skills, attention to detail, accurate record-keeping, and the ability to work well under pressure are key requirements. Most of your time will be spent working outdoors so you must be physically fit and comfortable working in remote upland locations in all types of weather.

In addition to bird of prey monitoring, a core responsibility of this post is the support of our dedicated team of around 20 volunteers as a vital component of our work in Bowland. You will employ positive people skills to support and inspire them, and to develop their skills. You will also use excellent communication and diplomacy skills to build positive relationships with local partners and stakeholders, deal with conflicts constructively, and to encourage engagement and support for our work and to deliver results.

A driving licence will be necessary due to the need to travel within Bowland, and experience of driving off-road over difficult terrain is desirable. This is a five month post running from the beginning of March to the end of July. It often involves working long hours, including some early-morning and late-evening working, and occasional weekend work.

Set in beautiful upland scenery as well as the birds of prey that make Bowland so special, there are also important populations of Curlew, Ring Ouzel, Common Sandpiper and Pied Flycatcher amongst many other species. The Forest of Bowland in the breeding season is an incredibly exciting place to be for wildlife enthusiasts, and this is a very special opportunity for someone with the required skills.

This role is covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act. You will be asked to declare unspent convictions and cautions at offer of employment stage.

Salary starting at

£16,504 - £17,880 per annum pro rata

Hours & contract information

Hours: Full time
Contract: 5 months fixed term contract

Closing date: 1 February 2019
Interview date: 15 February 2019

How to apply

Our role profile describes the key result areas and skills and experience needed for the role. Please make sure you include reference number A5140119 on your application.

Role Profile (Word 144Kb, requires Microsoft Word)

Application details (Word 31Kb, requires Microsoft Word)

Who to contact

For questions about this post
Blanaid Denman
blanaid.denman@rspb.org.uk
0191 2334331

Send application details to
Marie Stawarski
marie.stawarski@rspb.org.uk
The RSPB, Lancaster Office, RSPB Northern England Region, 7.3.1 Cameron House, White Cross Estate, Lancaster, LA1 4XF, 01524 581000