Shipman, Virginia
$19.23 - 21.63 An Hour
Rehabilitation Program Manager
Rockfish Wildlife Sanctuary
Date Posted:
United States
Primary Category:
Animal Care
$40,000.00 yearly
Type of Position:
Education Requirement:
Experience Requirement:
3-5 years
Description & Details
About Rockfish Wildlife Sanctuary
Located in beautiful Nelson County, Virginia at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Rockfish Wildlife Sanctuary is dedicated to bettering our environment through wildlife rehabilitation and raising public awareness about the importance of wild animals. Serving Central Virginia from our modern facility in Shipman, the Sanctuary's staff and volunteers rehabilitate almost 900 wildlife patients annually. Animal care is provided across 2 indoor nurseries and 50 outdoor enclosures on the property. The Sanctuary also offers free educational programming in schools and community centers with the help of our team of education ambassador animals. This combination of rehabilitative care and community outreach constitutes the Sanctuary's deep and lasting commitment to creating a vibrant and compassionate future for our wild neighbors here in Virginia.
Position Description
Rockfish Wildlife Sanctuary (RWS) is seeking a thoughtful, experienced wildlife rehabilitator who is passionate about wildlife and its importance to the environment. RWS has a three-part mission:
Rescue and rehabilitate injured and orphaned native wildlife in Central Virginia and release them back into the wild.
Inform the community about what to do when an injured or orphaned wild animal is found and who to contact for help with the animal.
Educate the residents of Central Virginia about the habitats and needs of native wildlife and how to best support wildlife conservation.
The Rehabilitation Program Manager (RPM) is responsible for directing the first part of this mission while supporting the Executive Director in achieving the second and third parts. The RPM will lead our wildlife rehabilitation program, overseeing the care of nearly 900 patients and 10 ambassador animals annually while supervising a small team of rehab staff and interns. The RPM will be ultimately responsible for all decision-making related to wildlife care and developing rehabilitation protocols that reflect the highest standards of care in the field.
The Sanctuary operates from 7 AM - 7 PM during our busy spring and summer seasons, and rehabilitation shifts are typically either 7AM-3PM or 11AM-7 PM. The Rehabilitation Program Manager will primarily be working the opening shift. There may be an option for 4x10 hour shifts per week depending on employee interest and staffing needs. Weekend work may be required, but each employee has two consecutive days off per week. Due to the nature of wildlife rehabilitation, remote or hybrid work is not an option for this position.
Job Duties and Responsibilities
Reporting to the Executive Director,, the Rehabilitation Program Manager will have overall operational responsibility for ensuring excellent, safe care to all RWS patients and non-releasable education ambassadors.
Rehabilitation (Animal Care): 80%
Manage daily rehabilitation operations at the Sanctuary, directing and carrying out treatment for patients while supervising staff and volunteers; ensure exemplary husbandry for all patients and non-releasable ambassador animals.
Oversee training and enrichment of education ambassador animals, including scale/target-training, handling, and glove-training raptors as needed.
Develop and improve rehabilitation protocols and make final rehabilitation decisions; perform humane euthanasia when necessary.
Develop biosecurity protocols and maintain high standards of cleanliness in nurseries, kitchen, laundry room and outdoor enclosures.
Monitor each animal's health, attitude, weight, appetite, etc., and maintain written records of each animal's progress.
Admit new patients and complete associated paper and digital records in WILD-One; examine and initiate first aid to patients and new arrivals.
Perform restraints, examination, diagnostic procedures and treatment of animals.
Maintain inventory of supplies, including bulk animal feeds and PPE; order supplies as necessary while maintaining a firm commitment to appropriate budgeting.
Arrange transport of incoming animals to RWS and transport severely injured animals to the Wildlife Center of Virginia.
Coordinate transfer of conspecifics to and from RWS to other permitted rehabilitators in Virginia; determine patient capacities by species as needed.
Answer hotline phone and respond to rehabilitation-related questions from the public via email; train staff and interns in appropriate responses to questions.
Prepare specialized meals for a variety of species; update patient meal protocols and nutritional profiles as needed.
Evaluate patients for release and perform releases as needed.
Coordinate maintenance and repair of animal enclosures with carpentry volunteers or staff.
Administrative (Human Resources and Permits) - 20%
Manage wildlife rehabilitation volunteer program, serving as point of contact for interested new volunteers and organizing volunteer shifts.
Maintain RWS's state and federal rehabilitation, exhibition, and salvage permits and submit annual reports at the state and federal level; ensure compliance with state and federal wildlife handling regulations.
Maintain personal state rehabilitation permit including at least 6 hours of continuing education annually.
Make next month's shift schedules for staff and interns by the end of each month.
Assist Executive Director in hiring processes for staff and interns by reviewing applications and interviewing applicants.
Onboard new rehabilitation employees by assisting with their rehab permitting process, rabies vaccination series, and new hire paperwork.
Train, supervise and mentor staff and interns.
Monitor all staff and volunteer rabies titer statuses, maintaining a schedule and reminding personnel about titer appointment needs.
With the support of the Executive Director, conduct annual reviews for rehabilitation staff.
Plan and implement effective community education and outreach programming with the Executive Director.
Attend fundraising events and serve as a public representative for RWS at various engagements, as needed.
Applicant Requirements
At least 3 years of direct experience in wildlife rehabilitation, preferably having worked with species native to Virginia, Appalachia, and/or the East Coast.
At least 1 year of supervisory experience in wildlife rehabilitation or management.
An up-to-date Tetanus shot and rabies-vaccine series. If you do not have a current rabies pre-exposure prophylaxis series, RWS will cover the cost of these important immunizations.
Current COVID-19 vaccine series and a willingness to abide by all organizational COVID restrictions.
Ability to lift and carry up to 50 lbs.
Ability to work outdoors in a variety of conditions performing manual labor, such as cleaning enclosures or collecting natural browse for patients.
A valid Driver's License for operating vehicles in Virginia.
A working knowledge of team management and leadership and a demonstrated ability to communicate effectively with both staff and members of the public.
Enthusiasm for the work and a strong understanding of time-efficiency.
A firm understanding of animal welfare best practices and how to reduce patient stress.
A deep commitment to diversity, inclusion, and accountability. RWS strives to be an anti-racist workplace and welcomes individuals of all lived experiences and identities.
Preferred Qualifications
A Bachelor's Degree in Biology, Environmental Science, Zoology, or related field is preferred but not required for this role. Experience in wildlife rehabilitation and team management is most important to being successful in this role.
Experience developing scientifically-informed biosecurity protocols and a firm commitment to providing the highest standard of cleanliness for the Sanctuary's patients and staff.
Knowledge of state and federal regulations related to the handling and care of wildlife.
Experience working with online wildlife patient databases, like WildONe or WRMD.
Experience training wildlife using positive reinforcement methods, and ideally experience working with glove-trained raptors.
The anticipated salary range for the Rehabilitation Program Manager position is $40,000-$45,000. This is a full-time exempt position with benefits.
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