Assistant Warden 2021 - Broome Bird Observatory


Broome Bird Observatory


Crab Creek Road, Broome, WA

Salary etc:

Volunteer role (living allowance & free accommodation provided)

The Broome Bird Observatory seeks a volunteer assistant warden for an 8-9 month period between February/March (start date TBC) and October 2021.

The primary role of the assistant warden will be to support our ecotourism activities. They will also have the opportunity to engage with our research and education programmes and develop skills in ornithology and bird identification as part of our team.


BBO is a not-for-profit organisation under the auspices of BirdLife Australia. It was established in 1988 and is situated on the shores of Roebuck Bay, 25 km by road from the town of Broome. Roebuck Bay is a Ramsar site of international significance to migratory shorebirds, located on the East Asian and Australasian Flyway.

The BBO was established as a centre to promote the knowledge and conservation of the birds of Broome, with particular focus on the migratory shorebirds of Roebuck Bay. It has an international reputation as a base for research, education and social birdwatching. It has also developed a commercial ecotourism revenue base and has the potential to be an important component of Broome’s tourism network. The BBO provides accommodation and camping for the public. It conducts regular birdwatching tours as well as educational courses and research activities. We are currently developing a new interpretive centre on site.

The BBO is managed by a volunteer committee, mostly based in Broome. It receives no financial support for its operations, and is dependent on revenue gained by its tourism activities, donations and occasional grants.

The assistant warden will undertake a range of duties necessary to ensure that guests have the best visit possible - experience having shown that word-of-mouth is the best form of advertising. Working in a small team in a remote location can make this role challenging. It is however highly rewarding with many opportunities to interact with visitors, guests and researchers in a stunning and unique location.

Role description

The assistant warden’s role is to contribute to the effective operation of the BBO in accordance with the policies, procedures and directives set out by the BBO Management Committee and BirdLife Australia.

The following are key duties of assistant wardens, in order of priority.

  • Guest management (approx. 50% of time)
  • Office duties and facilities (approx. 40% of time)
  • Research and education activities (approx. 10% of time)

Volunteer conditions

Requirements of the incumbent assistant warden

  • Maintain a neat, clean, well-groomed appearance at all times when in contact with the public, and ensure that the grounds and office areas are similarly clean and tidy.
  • Uniform shirts must be worn at all times when on duty.
  • Boots or closed shoes are to be worn at all times whilst on duty, both for safety and neatness.
  • Smoking is not permitted in any BBO buildings or vehicles.

Provisions for the incumbent assistant warden

  • An allowance of $230/week to cover your living and food expenses.
  • Free, furnished room in a ‘donga’ (a transportable building).
  • Provision of uniform shirts and sunscreen.
  • Reimbursement of costs in securing an F class licence.
  • A one-off payment of $330 to help with relocation, plus the same on completion of the season.

Selection criteria

The following criteria will be considered as part of the selection process:

  • Knowledge of and interest in Australian birds and bird conservation issues, and a willingness and ability to acquire specific knowledge about Broome birds, particularly migratory waders.
  • Successful previous experience of working in the hospitality, human services or ecotourism area on a paid or voluntary basis, preferably with previous hands-on experience of guest management.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills including experience giving presentations.
  • Demonstrated ability to live and work under pressure in a challenging physical environment.
  • Relevant tertiary qualifications in Applied Science, Ecotourism or a related discipline.
  • A current Australian ‘C’ class driver’s licence that can be immediately transferred to a Western Australian licence, plus the ability to obtain an ‘F’ class endorsement immediately: this requires holding a C class for at least 4 years prior to application, 2 years of which may be on P plates i.e. WA applicants must be at least 21 years of age.
  • A current first aid certificate.
  • Good computer skills including a working knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook (email) and the internet.
  • Demonstrated practical building maintenance skills and 4WD experience.

How to apply:

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Date published:


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