Join the growing team of the Monarch Joint Venture, a nonprofit dedicated to conserving the monarch butterfly migration across North America. We are hiring one field technician to fill out a two-person team to study monarch butterfly breeding and migratory habitat throughout California in 2022.

Initial training will be provided upon hiring (late June), with additional training to occur on-the-job. Field vehicle, fuel, and lodging costs are covered by the project grants. Travel to and from the training and work area at the beginning and end of the field season, food, and additional personal travel costs are the responsibility of the employee. Field season lodging will include a combination of camping and hotel or rental accommodations, to be determined by the field crew each week, with a given budget.

Two active projects are running concurrently during the 2022 field season, one evaluating pollinator habitat on randomly selected (often quite remote) points on California Bureau of Land Management land and another evaluating publicly and privately owned habitat restoration or enhancement projects.


  • Training and field season preparation (5%). General onboarding procedures including organizational operations and safety training. Learn standard operating procedures for site visits. Prepare travel schedules and site survey routes, and contact site managers/owners.
  • Field data collection (65%). Conduct field surveys. Data collection involves walking a series of transects at each site and recording the information within 1-m2 quadrats, examining milkweed for monarch eggs and larvae within a 1-ha area, and recording adult monarchs observed along a transect or incidentally.
  • Data and field logistics management (20%). Maintain, organize, and enter field data on tablets/computers (provided by MJV) throughout the season. Maintain a travel schedule and secure lodging as the season progresses with guidance and direction from the field supervisor. Conduct data proofing and correction to ensure data accuracy. Maintain regular contact with MJV staff and field site contacts.
  • Technicians may assist in training local conservation staff and volunteers to conduct monitoring and enter data following Integrated Monarch Monitoring Program (IMMP) protocols. Trainings include informal field excursions and connecting trainees to IMMP resources for further learning.
  • Conduct additional duties related to this field study as the need arises. Tasks may include, but are not limited to, contacting site managers for habitat management data, organizing or generating media content and training tools, or preparing data or data collection tools for future use.

Qualifications and Skills:

  • Field technicians must have experience in the fields of biology, botany, wildlife, or another related field.
  • Technicians must be able to work both independently and in close collaboration with a teammate.
  • Work will entail long days of driving and collecting plant and insect data in direct sunlight, high temperatures, and buggy or other harsh field conditions.
  • Technicians must be comfortable interacting with private landowners and available to spend overnights in distant or remote locations (e.g., camping).
  • The positions require excellent verbal communication skills, attention to detail, and the ability to enter data accurately onto a mobile device and computer.
  • Valid driver’s license is also required.
  • Experience collecting plant and insect data.
  • Knowledge of California milkweed species and other flora.
  • Experience with GIS and navigating with a GPS or compass.
  • Coursework or experience identifying plants and insects.