- Chaplin Nature Centre - Seasonal Manager Position
Chaplin Nature Centre - Seasonal Manager Position
Employer Name: Chaplin Tourism Committee Inc.
Wage/salary: $25/hr (commensurate on experience)
Location: Chaplin, SK
Positions available: 1
Application deadline: March 17, 2023
Employment terms: Full time in peak season and part time negotiated in off season.
Employment length: March to early September with the hours of operation at the Nature Centre – mid-May to late August Mon-Fri 9-5
Experience: some experience in retail and or administration/management and knowledge of grant writing/funding proposals would be an asset but not a necessity for success in the position. The board is willing to work with the successful applicant to ensure a mutually rewarding experience for both parties.
Education: Post secondary preferred. Administration or marketing interest would be helpful.
Applicant will assist the Chaplin Tourism Board in management, promotion and some program development as required during the term of employment. Applicant will assume the scheduling and oversee duties of employees also hired to undertake daily duties for the Chaplin Nature Centre. This includes welcoming visitors to the Centre, arranging, promoting and conducting tours of the interpretive centre and preservation of the displays and artifacts in-house. Operational aspects of the retail gift shop, handling cash, debit/credit transactions, daily cash receipts reconciliation, tracking inventories. Daily updates as required on social media platforms. Light duty cleaning and maintenance necessary inside and outside building. Knowledge of and interest in shorebird and grassland species and prairie grassland habitat an asset - training material is also available.
Off season duties include searching and writing applications for grants and funding. Also required will be the promotion of our site to other organizations interested in recognition and appreciation of wildlife and environmental organizations with concerns similar to our facility.
- excellent oral communication
- effective written communication
- critical thinking
- ability to work well with other employees
- job task planning and organizational skills
- knowledge of computer and internet including ability to utilize search engine features effectively, and social media platforms
How to apply: email resume to firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact info: Lisa Fisher (306-796-7978)
- 2023 Summer employment opportunities now open
- Nature Saskatchewan has the following job opportunities. All positions are based in Regina, involve extensive travel in rural southern and central Saskatchewan, and start May 8th, 2023. General qualifications include a strong interest in conservation and environmental education, and studies in the fields of biology, ecology, geography, agriculture, or other related studies. Applicants should have strong communication, computer, and organizational skills; be self-motivated with the ability to work independently as well as part of a team; and hold a valid driver’s license (vehicle will be provided). Positions are heavily field-based so applicants must be willing to do extended, overnight travel and work flexible hours, including outdoors in inclement conditions. Applicants should also be able to hike to field sites carrying field equipment. Please note on your resume if you have First Aid and CPR certification.Applications for all postings must be sent via email and will be accepted until 11:59 pm on February 12th, 2023. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted. Selected applicants will be contacted via email.
Habitat Stewardship Summer AssistantPositions: Two full-time summer positions for 16 weeks @ $18/hour. Summer assistants will assist in the delivery of our stewardship programs: Operation Burrowing Owl, Shrubs for Shrikes, Plovers on Shore and Stewards of Saskatchewan banner program. These programs promote conservation of prairie species at risk and their habitat.Tasks and responsibilities: Assist program coordinators with program delivery; prepare communications and educational materials for distribution; assist in searches, monitoring and other conservation activities; contact and communicate with rural landholders regarding target species and the stewardship programs; educate targeted public audiences about species at risk on the prairies; and help create and deliver workshops and presentations to agricultural producers and the public (virtual and/or in-person).Specific requirements and qualifications: Willingness to do extended overnight travel, camp, work evenings and weekends, and adapt to schedule and protocol changes on short notice. Should also possess basic wildlife and plant identification skills, computer skills, communication skills; and familiarity with GPS, maps, and rural Saskatchewan are assets.Please email a cover letter and resume in one PDF file to Emily Putz at email@example.com by 11:59 pm, February 12th, 2023. Include in the subject line “Summer Assistant Application” followed by your name.
Rare Plant Rescue Habitat Stewardship Summer AssistantPosition: One full-time summer position for 16 weeks @ $18/hour. The summer assistant will assist in the delivery of our Rare Plant Rescue program. This program promotes conservation of prairie plant species at risk.Tasks and responsibilities: Assist program coordinators with program delivery; prepare communications and educational materials for distribution; assist in planning and conducting searches, monitoring, and other conservation activities; contact and communicate with rural landholders regarding target species and the stewardship programs; enter data; educate targeted public audiences about species at risk on the prairies; and help create and deliver workshops and presentations to agricultural producers and the public (virtual and/or in-person).Specific requirements and qualifications: Basic plant identification skills (training in rare plant identification will be provided); willing to work flexible hours outdoors including in inclement conditions; willing to adapt to changing schedules due to unexpected circumstances or adjustments based on field conditions; willing to do extended overnight travel; camp; work evenings and weekends; ability to hike to field sites carrying equipment; strong organizational skills; working knowledge with Excel; familiarity with GPS and maps is an asset.Please email a cover letter and resume in one PDF file to Ashley Vass at firstname.lastname@example.org by 11:59 pm February 12th, 2023. Include in the subject line “RPR Summer Assistant Application” followed by your name.
Rare Plant Rescue Search and Monitoring StaffPosition(s): Four full-time summer staff for 16 weeks @ $20/hr. Search and monitoring staff will assist in the delivery of our Rare Plant Rescue program, which promotes the conservation of prairie plant species at risk. The search and monitoring staff will work as a semi-independent team, with daily check-ins during field shifts up to 10 days, under the supervision and mentorship of the project leader.Tasks and responsibilities: Plan and conduct occupancy surveys and monitoring of prairie plant species at risk; contact and communicate with landowners regarding target species and the stewardship programs; data entry.Specific requirements and qualifications: Basic plant identification skills (training in rare plant identification will be provided); willing to work flexible hours outdoors including in inclement conditions; willing to adapt to changing schedules due to unexpected circumstances or adjustments based on field conditions; willing to do extended overnight travel; camp; work evenings and weekends; ability to hike to field sites carrying equipment; strong organizational skills; familiarity with GPS and maps is an asset.Please email a resume and cover letter in one PDF file to Ashley Vass at email@example.com by 11:59 pm February 12th, 2023. Include in the subject line “RPR Search Crew Application”followed by your name.For all positions, preference will be given to Canadian students or recent graduates whose studies include the fields of biology, ecology, geography, agriculture, or other related studies. All else being equal, preference will be given to those who self-identify in their cover letter as being part of an underrepresented group or as having additional barriers in the labour market, such as racialized and visible minorities, 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals, Indigenous individuals, women in STEM, or persons with disabilities.Nature Saskatchewan is a non-government charitable organization that engages and inspirespeople to appreciate, learn about, and conserve Saskatchewan’s natural environment.
- Christmas Bird Count for Kids
The Christmas Bird Count for Kids event is free and is happening on Saturday, January 7th from 1 to 4 pm in Wascana Centre (Regina).
We will teach people how to use binoculars, head out on a 1 hour walk with a bird expert to look for birds, have hot chocolate and cookies, create bird arts and crafts and have a guest speaker who is bringing bird specimens from the Royal Saskatchewan Museum so that people can get a close look at birds. Plus we will have a guest speaker with a real Falcon!
- FREE EVENT: Weeds, Birds and Bats: A Landowner Workshop
Join Nature Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Prairie Conservation Action Plan, the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Foundation and the South of the Divide Conservation Action Program for a FREE landowners workshop.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
A workshop geared towards landowners and managers with hands-on activities and case studies. Workshop includes snacks, coffee and supper!
- Invasive Weed Management
- Conservation Easements and other funding initiatives
- Species at Risk Identification and Habitat Needs
- Multi-Species Habitat Case Study
- Ranch Planning Activity
RSVP is required by November 23, 2022
- University of Saskatchewan, discussing Bats!
- Saskatchewan Falconry Association with live Peregrine Falcons!
Two dates and locations to choose from:
Glentworth Community Hall (Glentworth, SK)December 7th, 20222 PM - 8:30PM
PLEASE NOTE: THE FRONTIER EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED DUE TO LOW REGISTRATION
Frontier Community Hall (Frontier, SK)December 8th, 2022
2 PM-8:30 PM
- A Masked Killer- Tales of the Butcherbird!
Regina, SK – October 27, 2022 – What is that hanging on the barbed wire fence? It’s the left-overs of the ghoulish songbird, the “Butcherbird”. The shrike, also known as the “Butcherbird”, is the most macabre of the passerines. Unlike most other songbirds, the shrike is a carnivore, preying on whatever it can catch from insects and amphibians to reptiles and small mammals.
The shrike sits on a dead shrub branch covered in thorns, looking for its next meal. A garter snake slithers through the grass and the shrike swoops down, delivering a swift bite to the back of the neck with its hooked beak and severing the spinal cord. The shrike then carries the snake back to the bush and carefully impales its prey on one of the thorns, adding the garter snake to its “larder” of victims.
Despite its ghoulish nature, shrikes possess the same weak perching feet as other songbirds and cannot hold down the snake’s corpse while they rip off pieces of flesh to eat. Instead they impale their prey onto thorny shrubs or barbed wire where they can rip off bite-sized pieces or store it to be eaten later. The collection of carcasses makes up a grisly display, helping to attract a mate in the spring and serving as a readily available source of food.
As Halloween approaches you will probably not see the threatened Loggerhead Shrike, as they are a migratory songbird and are currently arriving in southern Texas and Mexico to settle in for the winter months. However, their close relative the Northern Shrike shares the same spooky habits as the Loggerhead Shrike and are found in Saskatchewan in the fall and winter months. The Northern Shrike looks very similar to the Loggerhead Shrike and the biggest difference is the time of year that you will see them. Northern Shrikes migrate south to Saskatchewan in the fall and head back north in the spring. So if you see a creepy collection of small animals impaled on the fence or shrubs keep an eye out for any Northern Shrikes in the area!
The Loggerhead Shrike has a black eye “mask” to match its black hooked beak. They are slightly smaller than a robin, with a white breast and belly, a grey back, and contrasting white markings on their black wings and tail. Loggerhead Shrikes get the second half of their name from the hair-raising high pitched shriek they give when alarmed.
Nature Saskatchewan delivers a voluntary stewardship program called Shrubs for Shrikes that works with rural landowners to conserve habitat for Loggerhead Shrikes which are a species at risk. They are asking anyone who sees a shrike, or impaled prey, to call their toll free line at 1-800-667-4668 to help them monitor the populations. Personal information is never shared without permission.
For further information, please contact Nature Saskatchewan:
Rachel Ward, Habitat Stewardship Coordinator
Rebecca Magnus, Species at Risk Manager
- Celebrating 20 years of Seeking Rare Plants of the Prairies
Rare and Endangered plants are an often overlooked part of conservation work, most being small and hard to find in isolated ecosystems. Nature Saskatchewan’s Rare Plant Rescue (RPR) program aims to change this, and is this year celebrating 20 years of seeking out some of the prairie ecosystem’s most elusive organisms!
Focused on targeting nine species protected federally as threatened, endangered or extirpated, and seven provincially rare species, each year search crews ask permission to search suitable habitat on private landowner properties. Once located, information is taken on the plant’s health, phenology, and individuals are mapped and counted; this helps fill important gaps in the knowledge base of where these species are, how populations are doing, and what environment they need to thrive. “The past 20 years have seen tremendous success,” Emily Putz, Coordinator for Rare Plant Rescue explains,” by partnering with landowners conserving habitat, we have been able to search and collect data on Saskatchewan’s rarest plant species, contributing to the down-listing of at least three.”
Over the decades RPR has sleuthed out 720 occurrences of federally listed plants species and recorded another 556 provincially rare plants found incidentally on surveys, all during a whopping 559 individual quarter section sites searches! Once a plant occurrence is found RPR also monitors every 3-5 years, where they are able to revisit and map out how populations have changed between years, gaining information on whether the populations have grown or shrunk, or are being pressured from threats such as invasive species. Monitoring work is also a great opportunity to visit and reconnect with the wonderful landowners who make our program possible and keeps these plant populations healthy through their ranching practices!
There are currently 92 landowners and land managers in the program, conserving nearly 260,000 acres of rare plant habitat. This habitat includes rare fragile ecosystems such as sand dune environments, prairie fens, dry prairie ephemeral wetlands, and pristine, but rapidly disappearing native prairie. “Saskatchewan has lost the vast majority of its prairie, with estimates of what is left as low as 9%,” further explains Putz, “Rare plants are very specific about their needs, they require grazing and they can’t compete against aggressive tame species, such as Smooth brome or Crested wheatgrass, nor against cropland expansion.” As habitat disappears, so do the plants, leading in turn to the further disappearance of species that rely on them such as birds, mammals, amphibians, and pollinators; species that humans also rely on. Nature Saskatchewan uses voluntary handshake agreements with landowners in an effort to conserve and collect data on target plants. The program works alongside the landowners’ existing practices, and the land continues to be used in a way that benefits the steward. “We rely on our ranchers and landowners to keep these plants thriving, if you think you have a rare plant or suitable habitat please give us a call on our toll-free Hoot Line, at 1-800-667-HOOT (4668) or email firstname.lastname@example.org,” Putz mentions. “Every rare plant recorded is helping to map ranges, monitor populations, and aid with conservation efforts.” Information provided is never shared without permission.
For further information, please contact Nature Saskatchewan:
Emily Putz, Habitat Stewardship Coordinator
Rebecca Magnus, Species at Risk Manager
- A summer as a Rare Plant Rescue Habitat Stewardship Assistant
My role as Rare Plant Rescue habitat stewardship assistant provided me with plenty of diversity in my work. It offered a great balance of fieldwork outings and office work (data entry, trip planning, land owner phone calls, etc.). Creating and maintaining a positive relationship with the landowners is crucial in the success of our programs. Local landowners and ranchers are an integral part of the work we do at Nature Saskatchewan, without their passion and care for their land and the species that call it home, we would not be able to search or monitor our federally listed target species.
The bird crew, rare plant rescue (RPR) search crew and I kicked off our summer in Southwest Saskatchewan to search for Slender Mouse-ear-cress (Transberingia bursifolia). Our first outing consisted of a group training trip around Cabri to learn different search and monitoring techniques that we would be utilizing throughout the summer. Though we didn’t find our target, it was a good chance to learn about fieldwork and build a bond with each other. There is no such thing as disappointing scenery when it comes to travelling through Southwest Saskatchewan and the hospitality is second to none.
We saw and heard many species at-risk around the area including Sprague’s pipits (Anthus spragueii), Chestnut-collared longspurs (Calcarius ornatus), Loggerhead shrikes (Lanius ludovicianus), Ferruginous hawks (Buteo regalis), and common nighthawks (Chordeiles minor). Many of the landowners in the area do a great job of caring for their land and listening to the happy singing and calls of the grassland bird species makes that evident!
A highlight that stands out the most from my summer was the encounter with a coyote while searching for the plant, Dwarf Woolly-heads (Psilocarphus brevissimus). While my coordinator Emily and I were searching, we noticed a figure coming up over the hill, thinking it was yet another pronghorn, it was in fact a coyote. He noticed us but didn’t seem overly bothered by our presence, nor were we bothered by his. After a few moments of him lying there observing us, he decided he wanted to get a closer look at what we were. As he made his way down the hill slowly and cautiously cruising towards us, I remember feeling more frozen in awe than fear. Oddly enough, there was no sense of danger, only curiosity and a mutual respect. Once he got down-wind from us and caught our scent, his pace quickened as he realized what we were and he cautiously ran off looking back every now and again. These beautiful animals tend to get a bad rap but this encounter will be an experience I will hold close to my soul for the rest of my life. The next day we found our target species, Dwarf Woolly-heads! Needless to say, it was my most successful and memorable trip of the summer.
Our search for Smooth Goosefoot (Chenopodium subglabrum) surveys brought us into the Great Sandhills area. Saskatchewan’s diversity never ceases to amaze me. Unfortunately, we didn’t find Smooth Goosefoot during this trip, but we did come across plenty of occurrences of the provincially rare plant, Small Lupine (Lupinus pusillus) and a few Ferruginous hawks along the way.
Our last trip of the summer brought us to the Southeastern part of the province to Estevan to search for Buffalograss (Bouteloua dactyloides). This trip was special for a few reasons. First, it ended the same way it started; together with the bird crew and RPR search crew. Second, despite not being able to find any Buffalograss, we did have quite a few species at-risk sightings. We heard the call of a Sprague’s Pipit, saw two American Badgers (Taxidea taxus), many Northern leopard frogs (Lithobates pipiens), and even a few majestic and endangered Monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus). One of the more memorable sightings for me would have to be one beautiful Monarch in particular that had chosen to land on my knee just long enough for a picture!
We wrapped up the summer by heading back to the Great Sandhills area where Nature Saskatchewan partnered with Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) and Birds Canada to put on a presentation of the ecology of the Great Sandhills followed by a wonderful, private tour of a local rancher’s breath-taking land.
From sharing lunch with caterpillars, to a face-to-face encounter with a coyote and everything in between, this experience has given me the opportunity to get up close and personal to some beautiful flora and fauna. I am so thankful for the partnerships and connections made over this summer; it is an experience I will take with me in every facet of my life.
- Letâ€™s Celebrate Monarchs Together on August 20th!
The last couple of weeks have seen a surge in Monarch butterfly and caterpillar (larvae) sightings. With the upcoming national Flight of the Monarch Day on August 20th, now is the perfect time to sharpen your Monarch identification skills and capture some photos and observations to share in the celebration!
Monarchs are a species at risk throughout their range with Saskatchewan being at the northern extent of their range. Nature Saskatchewan’s Stewards of Saskatchewan Coordinator, Rachel Ward, says “it takes between three and four generations for Monarchs to get from their over-wintering grounds, in Mexico, to Saskatchewan.” She adds “the generation emerging now will live the longest, making the full journey south back to Mexico to overwinter, so it is extra important that we help conserve the habitat for this incredibly important generation of Monarchs.” Nature Saskatchewan runs the voluntary Stewards of Saskatchewan program that works with communities and landowners to conserve Monarch habitat and help monitor the population each year.
Monarch butterflies are identifiable by their bright orange colouring with black veins throughout their wings, along with white spots on their black body and the outside edges of their wings. “Watch out for look-a-likes such as the Viceroy,” explains Ward. “Viceroys look very similar but have an extra stripe on their hind wings that cross their veins.” The Monarch caterpillars have distinct white, yellow and black stripes with black filaments on both ends. Ward adds “you will see these caterpillars nearly exclusively on milkweed plants”.
The most important factor for these butterflies is the availability of milkweed as it is the food source that they solely rely on during their larval stage, this means that it is critical for the areas that these caterpillars emerge in to have a supply of milkweed readily available. Once they are fully developed butterflies however, they will feed on a variety of blossoming flowers, so planting a native seed flower garden helps them greatly. If you were looking to help these beautiful butterflies out, planting milkweed is the best way to do it!
Rachel Ward, Habitat Stewardship Coordinator
Phone: (306) 780-9832
Rebecca Magnus, Species at Risk Manager
Phone: (306) 780-9270
- The summer is almost over for the Rare Plant Rescue Search Crew
For the rare plant search crew the summer is already almost over, seemingly as fast as it had begun. Our latest outing had us in the Frenchman River Valley on the trail of Tiny Cryptantha (Cryptantha minima), a small, hairy feature on the steep and crumbling hills that in the heat would likely be no more than a grey, heat-desiccated husk only identifiable by its miniscule nutlets. As you can imagine this had us hunkering down whenever we found a dry hairy plant and intensely trying to remove its nutlets for inspection without them being taken away by the wind. In the end we did find some relatives of Tiny Cryptantha and some other rare plants, but ultimately the remarkable beauty of the Frenchman River Valley was the most rewarding.
Being so arid, cloudless and hot, it was hard for me to picture the insane storm of the mid-nineties that was described to us by a local landowner. Imagery of dark enveloping clouds, rain in sheets and a tornado that could twist steel pipes into a curly fry-looking objects. Part of me feels jealous of the stories, to see such a tremendous storm. However, the more reasonable part of me feels lucky we didn’t run into that kind of weather. In fact, even modest head-on winds were enough to whip a barrage of airborne grasshoppers at my face and that proved to be enough to frustrate me. Even if it was kind of funny as they bounced off my torso, sunglasses and teeth at high speed acceleration.
Up and down the hills we went, my feet bursting out in the first blisters I’ve gotten this summer, lucky that it took me this long. Every step was drawing us closer to the end of our plant searching journey in a bitter-sweet, ‘oh how time goes by so fast when you’re hiking around looking for plants’ kind of way. Some moments I greatly appreciated were hearing the eagles shriek above. What is a beautiful and unique sound to us must be the most terrifying imaginable to a gopher or vole. I also enjoyed coming across a full-body rattlesnake shed. An extra-long skin sleeping bag that looks like it must’ve felt so good to have emerged from, all intact in one piece. It made me wonder how good it would feel to come slipping out of all my dead skin at once. Lastly, I enjoyed encountering a real-life minotaur when leaving the valley at night. Illuminated in the darkness was a set of glowing eyes, and as our headlights drew closer the giant frame of a long horned bull emerged, imposing and mysterious in the pitch black. Turns out that coming from the city I may have an irrational fear of cattle that was only revealed to me when this giant bull surprised us on our nocturnal drive home.
South Saskatchewan is filled with so many gorgeous vistas, special plants, interesting creatures, and memorable moments that has made being a part of the rare plant search crew a real pleasure.
- The Ecological Buffalo: On the Trail of a Keystone Species
Nature Saskatchewan is proud to have financially supported this amazing publication. Based on Wes Olson's thirty-five years of working intimately with bison & featuring Johane Janelles's stunning photography, The Ecological Buffalo is a story that takes the reader on a journey to understand the myriad connections this keystone species has with the Great Plains.
The mere mention of the buffalo instantly brings to mind the vast herds that once roamed the North American continent, and few wild animals captivate our imaginations as much as the buffalo do. Once numbering in the tens of millions, these magnificent creatures played a significant role in structuring the varied ecosystems they occupied. With the arrival of Europeans and their rapacious capacity for wildlife destruction, the buffalo was all but exterminated. And with them went all the intricate food webs, the trophic cascades, and the interspecies relationships that had evolved over thousands of years.Despite this brush with extinction, the buffalo survived, and isolated populations are slowly recovering. As this recovery proceeds, the relationships the animals once had with thousands of species are being re-established in a remarkable process of ecological healing. The intricacy of those restored relationships is the subject of this book.The Ecological Buffalo: On the Trail of a Keystone Species is now available through the Nature Saskatchewan online store or by contacting the Nature Saskatchewan office at email@example.com (1-800-667-4668).
$39.95ISBN 978088977871910.875” × 10”, 180 full colour photographs, 60 illustrations