Main place of work: 1 post in South Leitrim (i.e. around Drumod); 1 post in Lower Lough Corrib, Co Galway

Employer: BirdWatch Ireland

Department: Conservation

Immediate Line Manager: Curlew EIP Project Manager

Duration: Jan. – December 2022 (with possible extension until September 2023) subject to funding

Salary: €35,000 per annum, pro rata

BirdWatch Ireland, on behalf of the Curlew EIP Operational Group (OG) is looking for two Ecological Advisors to assist with the delivery of The Irish Breeding Curlew EIP, funded by the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine’s, European Innovation Partnership fund. One post will be based in South Leitrim (around Drumod) and one in Lower Lough Corrib, Co Galway.


The Irish breeding Curlew Operational Group were successful applicants for an innovative project to stem the decline of the Curlew in Ireland in 2 specific areas, Lough Corrib in County Galway, and the south Leitrim bogs area. The project is funded by the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine’s, European Innovation Partnership (EIP) fund. It is trialing new and innovative programmes to improve breeding outcomes in these areas, including mechanisms for the management of predation risk and improvement in nest outcomes, capital works to improve habitats; and a results-based measure for Curlew.

Description of Role

The Ecological Advisor will survey and monitor breeding Curlew populations and monitor nest sites for breeding outcomes. They will assist in the implementation and administration of project scheme options and manage budgets. They will liaise with and provide advice and training to participating farmers on managing their land for Curlew.



  • A degree in a relevant scientific discipline, e.g., ecology, zoology, environmental science or similar.
  • At least three years experience of working on ecological and/or agricultural projects.
  • At least two years experience of carrying our bird surveys.
  • Understanding of breeding wader ecology and the factors affecting breeding Curlew in Ireland
  • Proven experience of writing scientific reports, post degree level, to include data collation and analysis.
  • Proven experienced in the use of GIS software and management of GIS databases, post degree level.
  • Proven experience liaising with farmers/landowners.
  • Proven experience of managing staff.
  • A full driving license and access to own transport.


  • Experience of carrying out breeding wader surveys.
  • Knowledge of Irish farming and the various schemes available to farmers, including DFAM support payments and systems
  • Familiarity with agricultural and bog habitat types.
  • An understanding of agricultural practices and their impacts on breeding waders.

Key aspect of the role

  • Survey and monitor breeding Curlew populations and monitor nest sites for breeding outcomes
  • Determine ownership and land management on target sites
  • Assist in budgetary analysis and shortlisting of candidates for scheme entry, including prioritisation and site assessments.
  • Assist in the implementation, administration and reviews of the project scheme(s).
  • Undertake field scoring assessments against the selected indicators; provide guidance and training on how scores may be improved.
  • Liaise with and provide advice to farmers participating in the results-based measures and landowners undertaking capital works.
  • Lead on the collation, analysis and write up of the project data for annual reports and the end of Project Report.
  • Maintain GIS databases.
  • In conjunction with the predator control operative, monitor predator populations on established transects.
  • Where possible, determine areas for erection of temporary electric predator exclusion fence around nests sites.
  • Assist with satellite tagging work, including monitoring of tagged birds
  • Assist with the assessment of stakeholder attitudes to the schemes and local outreach strategies, such as the Local Action Group and dissemination of materials for stakeholders and the general public.
  • Any other work as deemed appropriate by the Project Manager/Operational Group.

The successful candidate will be expected to work in close cooperation with the Project Manager, their counterpart (working in the other region) and the Curlew Keeper in their respective area to achieve the overall objectives of the project.

Terms and Conditions

Your normal working hours are 09.00 – 13.00 and 14.00 – 17.00 Monday to Friday. Some flexibility in working outside of these normal working hours will be required, especially during key periods such as the Curlew breeding season. Time off may be taken in lieu of extra hours worked. The salary for this position is €35,000 per annum, pro rata. Leave entitlement is 20 days per annum, pro rata, plus statutory holidays. It is expected that the successful candidate will work from home. They should ideally be based within, or near to, their respective work area.

Please complete the application form available on the BirdWatch Ireland website (www.birdwatchireland.ie see jobs section) or email kfinney@birdwatchireland.ie. Please include a CV.

Application forms should be sent to kfinney@birdwatchireland.ie (please put “Curlew EIP Ecological Advisor, and the relevant work area in the subject box) or by post to BirdWatch Ireland, Unit 20 Block D, Bullford Business Campus, Kilcoole, Co Wicklow.

Closing date for applications: 5pm on Thursday 2nd December 2021. It is anticipated that interviews will be held during the week starting Monday 13th December. Final arrangements will be made known to interviewees.