American Bird Conservancy
Aerial Deployment of Mosquitoes Project Manager
Title: Project Manager, Aerial Deployment of Mosquitoes
Supervisor: Hawai‘i Program Director
Location: Hawai‘i (specific island flexible)
Employment Type: Full-time, 2-year position with a possibility of extension.
We seek a knowledgeable and experienced person to lead and manage efforts to develop and test aerial deployment options for landscape-scale mosquito control for the Birds, Not Mosquitoes (BNM) project in Hawai‘i. BNM’s goal is to use the Incompatible Insect Technique to suppress mosquito (Culex quinquefasciatus) populations at a landscape-scale to protect native Hawaiian forest birds from avian malaria. The Project Manager will work with federal, state, and NGO partners across Hawai‘i, the continent, and worldwide to develop and test an aerial mosquito deployment method that is consistent with rules and regulations for drone or other aerial applications in the release areas. A partner is responsible for developing the unit that attaches to the aerial vehicle and releases the mosquito delivery packages. The Project Manager will identify options for aerial deployment and lead the process to determine the best option, including considerations of FAA and other permitting, flight distances, field conditions, etc. The position will lead efforts to evaluate the effectiveness of aerial deployment options, participating in mark-release-recapture (MRR) studies and field efficacy studies, and producing associated reports. They will determine best practices necessary to successfully deploy incompatible Culex mosquitoes, including release parameters, technology selection, and infrastructure requirements (staffing, resources, permitting) associated with ongoing aerial deployment across multiple islands. This position will collaborate with other BNM partners to plan and coordinate logistics of receiving mosquitoes from continental production facilities and delivering them to release sites in Hawai‘i. The end result will be detailed and actionable field deployment and operational plans for landscape-scale aerial deployment options for implementation of Wolbachia-incompatible Culex quinquefasciatus males. This person will be a critical part of the Birds, Not Mosquitoes project and report to ABC’s Hawai‘i Program Director.
- Evaluate options for aircraft (drones or other) to deploy incompatible Culex mosquitoes and determine the best option for long-term landscape-scale deployment in remote field sites.
- Evaluate possible deployment methods for incompatible Culex, compare and rank alternatives. Develop and write standard operating protocols for aerial deployment that are transferable and applicable across the project’s study areas.
- Collaborate on field trials of aerial deployment options for incompatible Culex males with associated mosquito Mark Release Recapture studies in conjunction with established partners in Hawai‘i to evaluate deployment efficacy.
- Work with partners and subcontractors to provide field and technical data necessary for EPA Emergency Exemption (FIFRA Section 18) and registration (FIFRA Section 3) by USFWS, State, and partners.
- Determine all federal, state, and local permits to operate aircrafts in release sites. Lead and coordinate with partners to secure all necessary permits.
- Identify required staffing and resources required to carry out and operate ongoing aerial deployment of IIT mosquitoes. Cooperate with partners to ensure staff are trained to implement aerial deployment protocols.
- Collaborate with partners on handling logistics upon receipt of mosquitoes from the continent to application sites in remote Hawaiian mountains. This includes coordinating import inspections for mosquitoes upon arrival to Hawai‘i.
- Coordinate and track project progress across multiple organizations and locations, and ensure all objectives and timelines met.
- Assist federal, state, and NGO partners with adaptively improving deployment methods once there are initial results from wide-scale application.
- Ensure all data and information is recorded and archived, proofed, and available to ABC in a format that ABC can share with partners.
- Support ongoing community engagement and communications by ABC and Birds, Not Mosquitoes.
- Assist and support ABC’s Hawai‘i Program Director in advancing goals and objectives of Birds, Not Mosquitoes.
- Demonstrated success at managing complex projects with multiple partners, including developing and tracking timelines, budgets, reports, and other shifting components.
- Knowledge of unmanned and manned aircraft, equipment, and regulations. Experience and understanding of relevant Federal Aviation Administration rules and other federal and state regulations (e.g., FR 14 §91, §107, etc.).
- Experience planning and implementing projects using unmanned and manned aircraft, including writing implementation protocols. Ideally these projects would involve landscape-scale biocontrol, pest, or agricultural control efforts.
- Drone operator license, or ability to quickly obtain one.
- Minimum of college degree and 3-5 years of experience in aerial deployment technology or similar field.
- Able to work both independently and collaboratively with a large, geographically dispersed team.
- Skilled in developing positive and productive relationships with a wide diversity of stakeholders including state, federal, and non-governmental organization staff.
- Enthusiastic about achieving project goals and finding solutions to obstacles, delays, and set-backs.
- Understanding and experience with Hawaiian culture, history, institutions, and ecology.
- Skilled in translating complex, technical issues through accessible and engaging presentations and conversations.
- Willing and able to travel frequently among islands, including occasional overnight stays and some weekends; intermittent travel to continent or internationally.
- Authorized to work in the U.S.
- Background screening required.
- Benefits include medical, dental, flexible spending accounts, and retirement savings.
- Paid vacation days, holidays (10+), and sick leave
At American Bird Conservancy, we believe that a diversity of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills makes us more effective. We are committed to creating a respectful and inclusive work environment for all of our employees.
As an equal opportunity employer, ABC is committed to ensuring that employees and applicants for employment have equal opportunities regardless of race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other factor unrelated to the requirements of the position.