Regional Vector Coordinator (Mosquitoes)


Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry


Cairns, Queensland

Salary etc:

$81,690 - $89,615 p.a. (APS 5).



Perform entomological surveillance activities at border locations to prevent the establishment of exotic mosquitoes within Australia.

  • The Vector Monitoring Program is one of the department’s longest operating and most important surveillance programs.
  • Work on the frontline protecting Australians from exotic mosquitoes.
  • Have the perfect mix of field and office work.

The Job

The Regional Vector Coordinator will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Coordinating, supervising Vector Surveillance Officers (VSO) and providing direction to Vector Officers (VO) including their training, verification and technical support
  • Maintaining regular contact with VSO/VOs and key stakeholders and act as central contact for department, Border Force, Defence, and State/Territory Health staff for issues related to notification or other vector responsibilities.
  • Ensuring the preparation, maintenance and annual review and updating (including assisting and coordination of toolbox production by VSOs) of a consolidated Vector ‘toolbox’ for each port, consisting of:
    • Aerial maps of the ports and high risk Approved Arrangements (AAs), with trap locations
    • Description of each trap including type, location, and frequency of inspection,
    • Current copies of all vector related Work Instructions including National Response Guidelines, and exotic mosquito notification procedures,
    • Copies of raw data worksheets, and
    • List of local and national vector contacts within our department, State Health, and Port Operator Managers to be contacted in case of an emergency.
  • Conducting vector monitoring activities as per risk category requirements, including placement, installation, maintenance and servicing of all traps
  • Conducting or overseeing regular surveillance activities at first points of entry and high-risk AA sites, in particular ground surveys and dipping, to include:
    • Assessing overall receptiveness of each surveillance location or area, including factors such as sanitation, breeding sites, frequency of conveyance movements, cargo types etc
    • Identifying, describing and mapping known or potential breeding sites
    • Sampling to determine mosquito species and relative abundance
    • Analysis of data collected from surveillance to identify issues with species abundance
    • Initiation of risk-mitigation actions, through liaison with department staff and stakeholders
    • Providing written reports documenting surveillance activities.
  • Conducting routine diagnostics for vector samples as per risk category requirements, including outports if required, by:
    • Rearing immature larvae
    • Morphological identification of all mosquito larvae and adults
    • Preparation and retention of specimens for molecular characterisation, when required.
  • Coordinating the collection of vector data and its accurate entry into the central data template and prepare and provide quarterly vector reports and data to National Vector Coordinator (NVC) and OSS-S supervisors
  • Conducting an annual review of vector monitoring review arrangements to ensure that appropriate vector monitoring activities, including identifying current issues, staffing constraints, training needs, etc to ensure vector monitoring arrangements are delivered, with input from supervisor and NVC
  • Contributing to non-routine, operational vector monitoring and management activities, such as undertaking inspections of conveyances or high-risk goods and working with other Vector program staff and the NVC to develop innovative approaches to managing vector risk.

Please note that this recruitment process will be used to initially fill one vacancy in Perth and one vacancy in Cairns. The merit pool established through this selection process, which is valid for a period of eighteen months from the date the vacancy was advertised in the Public Service Gazette, may also be used to fill future new ongoing vacancy in Melbourne.

What we are looking for

Knowledge and experience

The successful applicant will have:

  • Experience with planning, managing and conducting of field-based surveillance for insects, ideally mosquitoes, including establishing, maintaining and checking a network of traps.
  • Experience with working in a laboratory including rearing insects and preparing insect specimens and using light microscopy for their identification.
  • An understanding of the application of WH&S principles in office and field-based contexts.
  • Proven ability to perform field and laboratory tasks and management including preparation and storage of specimens, databasing, record keeping, preparation of reports and documentation including data analysis.

Skills and capabilities

The successful applicant will have:

  • Ability to work independently and as part of a nationally dispersed team.
  • Demonstrated ability to undertake diagnostics for insects using light microscopy.
  • Strong verbal, written and inter-personal communication skills and the ability to communicate to a diverse range of audiences.
  • Demonstrated initiative, self-motivation and ability to commit energy and drive to see that goals are achieved in an efficient and timely manner.
  • Sound data management skills including demonstrated competence in using programs such as Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, Outlook).
  • Demonstrated coordination skills and capacity to think strategically.
  • Demonstrated ability to build and sustain productive, positive, respectful relationships within a team, and a diverse array of stakeholders.

Mandatory qualifications

A tertiary qualification (Bachelor’s degree in biological sciences or a related field is highly desirable) OR demonstrated relevant experience.

Eligibility and other requirements

This position may require the occupants to work (and travel):

  • Outside of normal business hours, particularly during responses to detections of exotic mosquito species
  • In harsh environmental conditions or in culturally sensitive areas
  • In various regional locations that may be remote, to supervise or provide direction to staff from the department or other agencies who provide vector monitoring or surveillance activities.

The successful applicant must:

  • Hold a current Apply First Aid Certificate or have the ability to obtain this qualification,
  • Hold and maintain a valid Australian motor vehicle drivers licence,
  • Note that the physical requirements of the role(s) involve a combination of outdoor and office-based work,
  • Note that you may be required to perform occasional out-of-hours and weekend work,
  • Wear an official uniform supplied by the department, including during field operations (as applicable), in accordance with the department’s uniform policy,
  • Wear appropriate protective personal equipment and clothing to comply with departmental Work Health & Safety policies and procedures.
  • Successfully complete the department’s minimum training requirements in order to be appointed as a Biosecurity Officer under the Biosecurity Act 2015.
  • Note that relocation assistance is subject to negotiation

Citizenship - To be eligible for employment with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry you must be an Australian citizen.

Security Clearance - This position requires a Baseline Vetting security clearance. You will be required to obtain and maintain a clearance at this level.

Pre-employment Check - Your suitability for employment will be assessed through a pre-employment screening process. This process includes a requirement to undergo and satisfy a National Police Check, referee checks, character clearance and where required a pre-employment medical assessment, specified mandatory qualification(s) validation and a probation period of 6 months.

MSIC and ASIC Licences - If the position requires unescorted access within an aviation or maritime security zone, you will be required to obtain and maintain an Aviation Security Identification Card (ASIC) or Maritime Security Identification Card (MSIC).

Requirement to be vaccinated under public health orders

It may be a condition of your employment that:

  1. if you are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 under an applicable Australian law; or
  2. if the department is unable under an applicable Australian law to permit you to attend for work (ie outside of your usual place of residence) unless you are vaccinated against COVID-19,

you must be up to date with your COVID-19 vaccinations, and you must also comply with all recommendations from public health authorities regarding any additional vaccinations that ensure the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine that you have received.

Work Health and Safety Obligations

All workers (APS1-Secretary) have a duty to take reasonable care for their own health and safety whilst at work, to ensure their acts or omissions do not adversely affect the health and safety of other persons and to comply with any reasonable instruction given to comply with the Work Health and Safety legislation.

All supervisors and managers (APS5-EL1) play a significant role by modelling safe work behaviours and clearly setting the standard for acceptable behaviour in the workplace. Supervisors and managers play a critical role in supporting ‘Officers’ to exercise due diligence and in consulting with duty holders.

An Officer (EL2-Secretary) makes and participates in making decisions that affect the whole or a substantial part of the department. Employees at the SES Band 2 and above classification are considered to be Officers under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (Cth) with all EL 2 and above required to complete officer due diligence training. Officers have a duty to be proactive and continuously ensure that the department complies with relevant duties and obligations.


Date published:


Closing date:

11pm, 15-Jul-2024