Fisheries Biological Technician – Columbia River Estuary Chinook

  • Ocean Associates Inc.
  • Hammond, Warrenton, OR, USA
  • Jan 11, 2020
Full time Research Science

Job Description

Fisheries Biological Technician Columbia River Estuary Juvenile Chinook Habitat/Hatchery Studies

Ocean Associates, Inc. (OAI) is seeking a Fisheries Biological Technician to provide support to the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Fish Ecology Division for field research on the Columbia River from Bonneville Dam to the mouth. OAI supplies personnel support services on contract to government and industry clients for marine fisheries and protected species.



The Northwest Fisheries Science Center conducts research on juvenile salmon life history diversity, stock composition, habitat use, performance and growth, and movement and behavior in the lower Columbia River and estuary to evaluate regional management actions such as habitat restoration and hatchery production. Studies that support this mission include the surveying of juvenile salmon and other estuarine fishes in restoration and reference habitats using seine, trap, and fyke nets, as well as passive integrated transponder (PIT) tags. These studies also examine food web interactions by collecting macroinvertebrate prey samples and salmon diet analyses and explore ecological interactions between natural and hatchery origin salmon. This position will support ongoing research and include tasks such as setting and retrieving sampling gear in the field, installing remote PIT detection equipment, analyzing salmon stomach contents in a lab, and collecting, entering, and analyzing data.  The position will involve working in all weather conditions, field travel, and overnight stays.

Travel is anticipated.

This is a full-time task order with hours varying from 0-40 hours per week depending on sampling needs.

Start Date: ASAP

Location: Columbia River from Bonneville Dam to the mouth.

Salary and Benefit: Commensurate with experience. Comprehensive benefits package.



  • Collect, prepare and process biological specimens, including but not limited to stomach content samples and macroinvertebrate prey field samples.
  • Assist NOAA Fisheries research biologists in the field as they study life history diversity, habitat use, hatchery-wild interactions, fine-scale movement and behavior of Pacific NW salmon and the efficacy of habitat restoration actions. This includes:
    • Preparing, maintaining, and organizing sampling equipment.
    • Assisting in the field sampling and collections of fish and macroinvertebrates.
    • Assisting in the construction, installation, and maintenance of in-stream PIT detection systems and assisting with PIT data reporting.
  • Assist NOAA Fisheries Research Biologists with the preparation of scientific reports and manuscripts and convert hand written data files to an electronic form.


Other Duties Include:

  • Accurate and timely enumeration and identification of salmon stomach contents and prey field samples.
  • Accurate and timely entry of all stomach and prey data into an Access database.
  • Compile summary tables of salmon diet data and field prey items.
  • Operate in-stream PIT detection equipment.
  • Accurate and timely entry of tagging and detection data into an Access database.
  • Upload PIT data to PTAGIS.

Required Knowledge and Experience

Selected individual(s) must have the following minimum qualifications:

  • An Associate’s or bachelor’s degree with emphasis in biology, ecology or the fisheries sciences as related to the requirements of the specific Task Order, or coursework leading to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in biology, ecology or the fisheries sciences.

Additional preferred qualifications include:

  • Two or more years of applicable field experience.
  • Small boat operation experience.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in the use of Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Access and the ability to summarize data in tables and graphs.

If you are interested in being considered for this position,  please APPLY THROUGH OCEANASSOC.COM ,ADP WEB PORTAL.

Only qualified applicants that meet minimum experience or background requirements stated above need apply. When applying for this position you will be asked to upload your resume at the end of this online application.

Applicants should submit a resume that includes the following:

  • Cover letter that briefly describes how you meet the required and preferred qualifications listed.
  • Work history for past 10 years or since last full-time education.
  • Education.
  • Previous experience or training with similar requirements.
  • Three professional references.  
  • Include your name in the document file name.
  • Upload your resume in readable, not scanned, PDF or Word format (PDF is preferred).  

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States, complete the required employment eligibility verification document form upon hire, and successfully complete a federal government background check.  Ocean Associates Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of any status or condition protected by applicable federal or state law.