Ecologist / Extension Office needed for the Overberg Renosterveld Conservation Trust

Ecologist / Extension Office needed for the Overberg Renosterveld Conservation Trust

The Overberg Renosterveld Conservation Trust (ORCT) is looking for an Ecologist/Extension Officer for a three-year, full-time contract, with the option to renew subject to funding availability. The incumbent should be based / prepared to be based in the Overberg Rûens, be able to work independently and have his/her own transport and laptop. Ideally, this will be a person who would like to grow with the ORCT as we develop and expand our organisation.

Brief job description: 
The ORCT focuses on renosterveld conservation on privately-owned land in the Overberg, through our Conservation Easement Programme. Our area of operation stretches from Botrivier to Heidelberg and falls between the Riviersonderend-Langeberg mountains in the north and the Napier-Bredasdorp mountains in the south (i.e. the Overberg wheat-belt). Thus, the incumbent must be willing and able to travel within this area regularly.

Responsibilities include:

  • Easement-related duties: undertaking site assessments, ecological surveys, reporting back to landowners with detailed biodiversity inventories. Compiling IMPs (Integrated Management Plans) and APOs (Annual Plan of Operations), reviewing IMPs and APOs.
  • Implementing IMPs & associated interventions: managing/overseeing restoration interventions, which include working with labour teams (alien clearing, erosion control, ecological burns, fencing, etc.) & coordinating with landowners.
  • Monitoring: Setting up monitoring plots, camera traps and fixed-point photography, bird monitoring, etc.
  • Ecological surveys & bioblitzes encompassing all taxa.
  • Creating awareness amongst landowners and other important partners / stakeholders: giving presentations to farmer’s associations, attending and presenting at agricultural shows, expos and coordinating farmers’ field days.

Skills profile required:
Educational requirements: Minimum: Diploma in Nature Conservation or BSc.
Experience: Minimum 3-5 years in the field of extension / stewardship – related work.

Skills requirements:

  • Confident speaker (you will be required to give presentations)
  • Good spoken and written communications skills
  • Excellent organisational skills (you will have to manage multiple projects and deliverables)
  • Fluent in Afrikaans and English (you will be working with Afrikaans farmers)
  • Computer literate in all Office programmes (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.), internet use and email
  • Excellent interpersonal skills (you will be working with a variety of stakeholders including landowners, government officials and researchers)
  • GIS / mapping experience
  • Able to work independently
  • Good field ecologist / naturalist, some birding skills would be a bonus, willingness and ability to improve ID skills across all taxa
  • Personal characteristics: passionate about conservation, disciplined, innovative, organised, patient, humble, dependable, honest, willing to learn, grow and benefit from mentorship.

Total remuneration: R240 000 per annum, plus communications and fuel budget.

Please send a cover letter and a BRIEF (2 page max) CV by the 20th January 2020 to Dr Odette Curtis-Scott on Please include the contact details of 3 recent contactable references.

Please note:

  • The incumbent will be responsible for finding their own accommodation, but the option to live at Haarwegskloof Renosterveld Reserve will also be discussed & explored.
  • Candidates may be subjected to competency and psychometric tests.
  • A vehicle will be made available exclusively for work purposes and will not be for personal use, thus incumbent must have their own vehicle too.
  • Preference will be given to South Africans.