US Fish and Wildlife Service
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I have been working at US Fish and Wildlife Service full-time (more than a year)Pros
The Service is a large organization with varied programs. This gives many opportunities for those with background in biology or environmental sciences. The organization employes regulatory, scientific, and environmental management positions. This results in both desktop and field oriented opportunities. You work to actually implement conservation and the great American outdoors, not to promote conservation (NOGs) or barely meet regulations to secure permits for development projects (Consultants).
The Carterville Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office is a smaller staffed office. It is an active field office that requires participation in work outdoors (aquatic field biology). Positions here gives opportunity to be part of and manage active research and monitoring projects that contribute to conservation of habitat and species. As technician you get the opportunity to participate in and learn aquatic biology sampling and studies. As a biologist you get a good balance of field and desktop work. There are mainly three programs currently: Large River (The Mississippi), invasive species (mainly Asian Carp), and habitat programs. All current employees work well together. Management is good. No competition and backstabbing among employees. The office is well equipped and has money.Cons
As anywhere, there are bad managers in the agency (though I had better luck with FWS than in other agencies I have worked for). It is the government, things can take time - including hiring. For the Carterville office: almost all jobs are temporary or term which is a problem for those who wants long-term job security. It also has been partially understaffed which has been hard for field crews. Southern IL has some great nature spots but lack on cultural opportunities. It is a strip mall community that requires car to get to anything.RecommendsPositive Outlook