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ACE: Bullfrog Technicians (2) – Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, Olympia, WA

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is seeking 2 Bullfrog Technician Members to contribute to a bullfrog removal project in partnership with Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge Staff. During this term, the ACE members will work nights in canoe/kayak on the Black River capturing non-native bullfrogs in areas where federally listed Oregon spotted frogs are found.
For more information about ACE, please visit:

Start Date: July 7, 2021

End Date: September 10, 2021
**10-week commitment required**

Location: Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge- Black River Unit, Olympia, WA
The Black River Unit was established in 1996 and is managed as part of Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge. It encompasses a large mosaic of wetland and riparian habitats and surrounding uplands along the Black River. The purpose of the Unit is to protect biological diversity, enhance and manage unique wetland and riparian ecosystems for the benefit of anadromous salmonid production and rearing, migratory and resident waterfowl, migratory neotropical birds, wading birds and other wetland-dependent wildlife.

The Black River is a tributary of the Chehalis River, the second largest watershed in Washington. The Unit's wetland habitats make up one of the largest, relatively undisturbed freshwater wetland systems remaining in all of Puget Sound. The river's diverse habitats include prairie oak woodlands, sphagnum bogs, wet prairies, alder bottoms and wetland conifer forests. The Unit contains spawning and rearing habitat and migration corridors for native trouts and salmons. At least 150 species of migratory birds, including waterfowl and neotropical songbirds, use the wetland and riparian habitats. It is also one of only a few places where the Oregon spotted frog is known to occur in Washington. The Oregon spotted frog is a State listed endangered species and Federally Threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

For more information about the Black River Unit of the Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, 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: This is a part-time position (24 hours/week), involving work 3 nights per week between Monday and Friday. Duties will primarily be carried out overnight 7 pm to 3 am. 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 at least 24 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $408/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.

Housing: Housing is not provided for this position. Applicants must live in the area or be prepared to find their own housing if relocating.

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.

Primary Duties include:
  • Safely operating canoe/kayak on 3km of the Black River to capture bullfrogs through gigging (spearing) and/or using hand nets
  • Walking adjacent wetlands in waders, through tall grasses/cattails searching for and removing bullfrogs
  • Euthanizing bullfrogs (up to 30 per night)
  • Performing dietary analysis on bullfrogs

Physical Requirements: This position requires physical exertion such as walking long distances over wet and rough surfaces while carrying up to 40 lbs.; bending, crouching, stooping, lifting or reaching; operating canoes and kayaks; and wading through deep water and walking through 6-foot tall vegetation (grasses and cattails). Hand and finger dexterity and physical coordination may involve fine and precise procedures, delicate adjustments or exact measurements.

Environmental Conditions/Hazards: The Bullfrog Technicians will encounter environmental conditions/hazards including extreme heat or cold, rocky terrain, swamp or wetland conditions, biting insects, and potentially dangerous wildlife. The member is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/members or resources. Duties will primarily be conducted at night.

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. Any tools required for the accomplishment of the duties will be provided by the FWS. Use of personal protective equipment (PPE), 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.


  • Ability to perform the primary duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
  • Ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
  • Willing and able to represent ACE and the partner organization (FWS) in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner.
  • 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.

  • Competitive applicants for this position can hold a minimum of a high school diploma or GED and/or have interest in subject areas such as natural resources, biology, ecology or a related subject.
  • Knowledge of Washington amphibian species.
  • Experience paddling canoe and kayak.
  • Experience working nights
  • Experience gigging bullfrogs or hand capturing herptiles.
  • Deep interest in amphibian conservation, threatened and endangered species, and invasive species control.

Please note: Marijuana and other controlled substances are not allowed at any time during the performance of duties including while on federal property or in a FWS or ACE vehicle, regardless of State law or qualified medical marijuana card status.

To Apply: Please submit your resume, , 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:

NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position please feel free to contact ACE EPIC USFWS Recruitment and Member Manager, Dave Hecker,, 801-386-1629.

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.