Wildlife Ecologist/Senior Field Ecologist - Newhaven Wildlife Sanctuary


Australian Wildlife Conservancy


Alice Springs, Northern Territory

Australian  Wildlife  Conservancy  (AWC)  is  the  largest  private  (non-profit)  owner  of  land  for conservation  in  Australia,  protecting  endangered  wildlife at  29  sanctuaries in which  we  own  or manage in partnership, covering a total of more than 6.5 million hectares in iconic regions such as the Kimberley, Cape York, the Top End and Lake Eyre.   With a focus on practical land management, informed by world-class science, AWC is implementing a dynamic new model for conservation. 

AWC’s mission- to deliver effective conservation for all native animal species and their habitats- is achieved by: 

  • Operations-delivering effective large-scale land management including fire management, feral animal control, weed control and infrastructure management.  
  • Science-delivering the largest national biological survey program with a focus on measuring the population of indicator species and the extent of threatening processes as well as conducting research on key issues such as feral cat control.  
  • Fundraising-mobilising finance (primarily, tax deductible donations) from the general public and philanthropists including through effective communication of field updates from around the AWC estate.   

Of the 29 sanctuaries, 6 sanctuaries are in the southeast region: Kalamurina, Buckaringa, Dakalanta and Yookamurra in SA, Newhaven in NT, and Scotia in NSW, covering a combined area of more than 1 million hectares and protecting a diversity of threatened species and habitats.

Covering 262,000 hectares, Newhaven Wildlife Sanctuary is one of Australia’s largest non-government protected areas. At Newhaven dramatic quartzite mountains overlook extensive parallel sand dunes, spinifex grasslands, salt lakes and mulga woodlands. Newhaven is a hotspot for the wildlife of central Australia.

At Newhaven, AWC has initiated a project of global biodiversity significance – the establishment of one of Australia’s largest feral predator-free areas, currently covering 9,400 hectares, with future stages potentially increasing this area to up to 100,000 hectares. We plan to reintroduce at least 10 nationally-threatened mammal species to this area. The Mala is already established, with additional species including the Numbat, Golden Bandicoot, Greater Bilby, Burrowing and Brush-tailed Bettongs, and Central Rock Rat, planned for coming years.

AWC is seeking a highly motivated ecologist to help implement conservation programs on Newhaven.

The key responsibility of the position is to lead the team of ecologists based on-site to deliver AWC’s science program on Newhaven, including:

  • scoping and undertaking the measurement of ecological health
  • planning, implementing and monitoring the reintroduction of regionally-extinct mammals
  • developing and conducting research relevant to wildlife conservation
  • ensuring the tight integration of the science program with AWC’s land management where the Operations and Science teams are expected to work together as part of a national AWC approach to conservation.

We are looking for an ecologist who is driven to make a significant contribution to the conservation of Australia’s wildlife. The successful candidate will have the following qualifications and skills:

  • For appointment at the Wildlife Ecologist level, a PhD in ecology or a related discipline, plus relevant experience (including biological survey, research and monitoring), or for appointment at the Senior Field Ecologist level, a research higher degree (e.g., MSc) and extensive relevant experience.
  • Demonstrated capacity to lead a small team implementing a major project in a remote environment
  • The ability to work constructively with a wide range of stakeholders including land managers, neighbours, Indigenous communities, government agencies and volunteers.
  • Strong field skills and relevant analytical skills.
  • The aptitude for getting work done on time and budget

Based at Newhaven (4.5 hours’ drive north of Alice Springs), where on-site accommodation is provided, this is a unique opportunity to join Australia’s largest non-government conservation organisation and help shape the future of private sector conservation in Australia.  

This is a temporary appointment (1 year, initially). AWC will seek to provide further opportunities to the appointee, based on performance.

How to apply:

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