Conservation Assistant - Plant Team
JOB TITLE: Conservation Assistant, Plant Team
TEAM: Conservation & Fisheries
REPORTS TO: Conservation Team Leader
JOB PURPOSE: Assisting with endemic plant work, including nursery, in vitro biology, plant census and data entry. Carrying out plant restoration work as part of the ongoing endemic plant research and restoration programme within the island’s Biodiversity Action Plan.
- Work with the Conservation Team Leader/Plant Nursery Officer to carry out native and endemic plant nursery work.
- Carry out all necessary activities to conserve and maintain native/endemic plants and bryophyte banks in the wild and restoration sites i.e. fencing, invasive weed control, pest control. To carry out research and monitoring of current and new restoration sites under the direction of the Conservation Team Leader.
- Carry out seed and spore collections, to include cleaning, banking and cut tests.
- Work with the Conservation Team Leader/Plant Nursery Officer to conduct micro propagation trials (IVB) to develop endemic plant propagation protocols.
- Carry out bi-annual endemic plant censuses. Prepare maps and monitoring sheets for plant census and enter data collected into databases.
- Be responsible for the collection and input of other plant data.
- Maintenance of equipment used in the endemic plant programme.
- Maintain, and where possible add to on-island herbarium samples. To upkeep the herbarium database, and cataloguing of plant images and digitised vouchers.
- To assist with public outreach activities and write articles, prepare social media posts and design engagement resources.
- To supervise volunteers, youth workers and interns to carry out endemic plant activities as described in this section.
- Catalogue scientific documents, conservation reports and data, and upkeep photo libraries.
- To contribute to other Conservation projects including invasive species control, park warden work and seabird, land crab and sea turtle monitoring, under the direction of the appropriate project officers.
- To undertake any other related duties as requested by the Conservation Team Leader and Director of Conservation.
- Health and safety – to share in the corporate responsibility for the safety of staff and visitors to the office/work environment and comply with Health and Safety at Work procedures.
- Continuous development – responsible for your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
- To undertake the main duties of the post (detailed above) to the highest possible standard
- Work closely with other on-Island team members, and other stakeholders to complete the main duties of the post and towards a sustainable programme for marine research and conservation on Ascension Island
- To abide by the AIGCFD data management policy with regards to responsible archiving and documentation of scientific datasets
PERSON SPECIFICATION: Knowledge, skills, experience and personal attributes
- A strong school education, preferably to A-level standard, including study of biology or a related subject, or at least two years’ relevant vocational experience.
- Good experience of biological monitoring methods and of practical conservation practices such as native and endemic plant propagation, nursery work, seed and spore collections, restoration work and invasive species management and control.
- Experience of working on general conservation issues and contributing to public awareness programmes.
- Computer literate with experience of using Microsoft Office and GIS software
- Good written and verbal communication skills including experience of public speaking and leading groups.
- Experience of using clearing tools such as machetes, mattocks and saws safely and effectively.
- Ability to work as part of a team and also alone, and unsupervised in isolated areas of the island.
- Ability to solve problems relating to both people and wildlife issues and to implement plans.
· Be physically fit and enjoy working outdoors in all conditions.
· Be flexible and an enthusiastic team member.
· A clean valid driver’s licence.
- A degree or higher education qualification in the field of biology or conservation science
- Experience of working on general conservation issues relating to Ascension Island and other UK Overseas Territories.
- Pesticide application qualification.
- Chainsaw and brush cutter licences.
- Experience or qualification in 4x4 off-road driving.
- Experience in use of Microsoft Access, Zotero and photoQuad.
- Experience of collating or maintaining a herbarium collection
This Job Description indicates the main duties and responsibilities of the post. It is not intended as an exhaustive list.
The Ascension Island Government (AIG) reserves the right to amend this Job Description from time to time according to operational needs. Any changes will be discussed with you and confirmed in writing. Please note that you share with AIG the responsibility for making suggestions to alter the scope of your duties and improve the effectiveness of your post.
Updated: April 2021