This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:Fish Biologist

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Forest Service

Job Announcement Number:14-0516-38950DP-DLA

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$39,179.00 to $47,923.00 / Per Year


Tuesday, August 5, 2014 to Thursday, August 14, 2014




Full-Time - Permanent




3 vacancies - Sonora, CA View Map


US Citizens and Nationals; no prior Federal experience is required.


Not Applicable




A career with the Forest Service will challenge you to manage and care for more than 193 million acres of our nation's most magnificent lands, conduct research through a network of forest and range experiment stations and the Forest Products Laboratory, and provide assistance to State and private forestry agencies.

It's an awesome responsibility - but the rewards are as limitless as the views.

Up to 3 positions may be filled with this announcement. These positions are located on the Stanislaus National Forest, Sonora, CA. For additional information about the duties of the positions and/or locatiom, please contact Crispin Holland at 209-532-3671 x274 or

The incumbent serves as a fishery biologist in the administration of the fisheries/amphibian habitat and related coordination with other resources.

Additional selections may be made if another like vacancy occurs within 120 days of the issuance of the certification of eligibles.

This position is being concurrently announced under Merit Promotion Announcement Number 14-0516-38950G-DLA. Current or former Federal employees may apply to both announcements, but should be sure to apply to the Merit Promotion Announcement in order to avoid losing consideration since different referral criteria apply to each type of announcement. Disabled veterans, candidates with 3 or more years of active duty military service, and candidates eligible for special hiring authorities may apply to the Merit Promotion Announcement if they meet the criteria outlined in the announcement and submit supporting documentation.

The USDA Forest Service has legislative authority to recruit and fill Permanent (Career/Career-Conditional), Temporary, and Term Appointments under the USDA Demonstration Project. Under this authority, any U.S. citizen may apply.


  • Occasional Travel
  • For meetings and training


  • No


  • US Citizenship is required.
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959.


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Performs routine work in a fisheries/aquatic resource-related project. Provides biological input into the fish/amphibian habitat management program and assists in development of aquatic management plans. Ensures compliance with portions of aquatic management plans; coordinates limited studies of fishery/amphibian populations; and prepares a variety of written reports or limited environmental analyses. This includes gathering, compiling, and analyzing data to determine fish/aquatic habitat needs; determining key spawning, rearing, recommending solutions to special issues or problems involving fishery/amphibian resources; and determining the need for and designing of fish/amphibian habitat improvement projects; developing project plans for inclusion in Forest program of work; and studying and recommending solutions to special coordination problems involving fish/aquatic habitat protection.

Works cooperatively with State, Tribal and Federal fish and water quality management agencies. This includes gathering information for stream and lake management plans, surveys of fish/amphibian occurrence, mapping key fish/amphibian habitat for suitability and determining the need for aquatic habitat enhancement or restoration.

Participates on interdisciplinary teams and prepares environmental analysis reports in assigned functional area. Develops biological evaluations for threatened, endangered and sensitive species for review by journey level biologists.

Serves as leader of fish/aquatic habitat improvement projects and habitat inventory and monitoring programs. Participates in fishery/amphibian monitoring program activities by making observations, gathering data, and reporting findings.

Responsible for assigned areas of public relation activities, such as speaking at meetings and participation in field trips.

Responsible for reporting fish/aquatic habitat management programs accomplishments.

Participates in studies and plans proposed resource management activities, and coordinates and/or implements approved resource management plans such as habitat restoration or enhancement projects.

Develops standard plans for evaluating fisheries and riparian habitat. Studies and recommends solutions to special coordination problems involving fish/amphibian habitat protection.

Prepares environmental analysis reports as needed, and develops biological evaluations for threatened, endangered and sensitive species.

Duties listed are at the full performance level


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You must possess the Basic Requirements identified below to be considered eligible for all positions at the GS-5 grade level and above.

Bachelors Degree: major in biological science that included at least 6 semester hours in aquatic subjects such as limnology, ichthyology, fishery biology, aquatic botany, aquatic fauna, oceanography, fish culture, or related courses in the field of fishery biology; and at least 12 semester hours in the animal sciences in such subjects as general zoology, vertebrate zoology, comparative anatomy, physiology, entomology, parasitology, ecology, cellular biology, genetics, or research in these fields. (Excess course work in aquatic subjects may be used to meet this requirement when appropriate.)


Combination of education and experience -- courses equivalent to a major in biological science (i.e., at least 30 semester hours), of which a minimum of 6 semester hours were in aquatic subjects and 12 semester hours were in the animal sciences, as shown above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

In addition to the basic requirements, the following additional education and/or experience are qualifying. Transcripts must be provided for qualifications based on education. Your application or resume must clearly show that you possess the specialized experience requirements. Specialized experience is defined as experience that is typically in or related to the work of the position to be filled and has equipped you with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position.


One year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-5 grade level; one full year of graduate level education; an appropriate combination of graduate level education and specialized experience; or Superior Academic Achievement (go to this site to determine if you are eligible: The education must have been obtained in an accredited college or university and demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do the work. Examples of specialized experience are: Collected field data on streams and lakes for preparation of survey reports. Prepared reports that were required to record activities and inform supervisor of progress in the area of responsibility. Assisted in the preparation of, or prepared, presentations related to work assignments. Responsible for the proper use and maintenance of all equipment and supplies required in the performance of duties. Kept informed on current developments in fisheries management, habitat development and maintenance and the activities of other forest functions that may have affected fish or its habitat.


One year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-7 grade level; masters or equivalent graduate degree or 2 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree or LL.B. or J.D., if related; or an appropriate combination of specialized experience and education (only graduate education in excess of 18 semester hours may be used to qualify applicants for this grade level). The education must have been obtained in an accredited college or university and demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do the work. Examples of specialized experience are: Served as an advanced trainee specializing in fisheries/amphibian biology performing common qualitative and quantitative analyses of fisheries and amphibian/aquatic resources. Drafted designs or tentative professional opinions to assist in determining fisheries/amphibian resource needs and remedies. Assisted in carrying out a range of analytical/scientific assignments in the fisheries/amphibian biology profession that included collecting and analyzing data, issues, and information that support project recommendations. Developed standard plans for evaluating fisheries, amphibian and riparian habitats. Used and maintained equipment, including boat operation and maintenance.

To receive consideration for this position, you must meet all qualification requirements as of the closing date of the announcement.


Must be 18 years of age

May be subject to satisfactory completion of one year probationary or trial period

Initial appointment is subject to satisfactory completion of training


You will be evaluated in accordance with the category rating procedure as defined in the USDA Demonstration Project Plan. Applicants who meet the basic minimum qualification requirements established for the position will be placed in the Eligible category. Eligible applicants will be further evaluated against criteria for placement in the Quality category. This evaluation is based on the level of your experience, education, and/or training as determined by your responses to the Occupational Questionnaire. Applicants with veterans’ preference are listed ahead of applicants who do not have veterans’ preference within each category.

  • You will be evaluated based on your qualifications for this position as evidenced by the education, experience, and training you described in your application package, as well as the responses to the Occupational Questionnaire to determine the degree to which you possess the knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies of the position.  
  • We will review your application, including the online Occupational Questionnaire, to ensure you meet the job requirements and assess your ability to perform this job. Before any certificate can be issued to the selecting official, the resume and supporting documents are reviewed by an HR Specialist to ensure that (a) minimum qualification requirements are met and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your answers will be verified against information provided in your online resume and application. Be sure that your resume clearly supports your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position.
  • Applicants who meet the basic minimum qualification requirements and are determined to be among the best qualified candidates will be referred to the hiring manager for consideration. Non-Competitive candidates need to meet minimum qualification requirements to be referred.

Note: If, after reviewing your resume and / or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your score can / will be lowered to more accurately reflect the submitted documentation. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating. Deliberate attempts to falsify information may be grounds for not selecting you.

Clicking the link below will present a preview of the application form; i.e., the online questionnaire. The application form link below will only provide a preview and does not initiate the application process. To initiate the online application process, click the "Apply Online" button to the right.

To view the application form, visit:


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The Federal Government offers a comprehensive benefits package.  Explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees at:


Government housing is not available.

Forest Service affiliated daycare facilities are not available.

Relocation expenses are not authorized.

We may select from this announcement or any other source to fill one or more vacancies.

This is a bargaining unit designated position.

This agency offers alternative and flexible work schedules.

If you are selected for a position with further promotion potential, you will be placed under a career development plan, and may be non-competitively promoted if you successfully complete the requirements and if recommended by management. However, promotion is neither implied nor guaranteed.

Career Transition Assistance Plan(CTAP) or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): If you are claiming CTAP/ICTAP eligibility, provide proof of eligibility. CTAP/ICTAP eligibles must meet the agencys definition for a quality candidate to be considered. Information about CTAP/ICTAP eligibility is on OPMs Career Transition Resources website at

BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION AND FINGERPRINT CHECK: Selection and retention in this position is contingent on a successfully adjudicated FBI National Criminal History Check (fingerprint check) and a background investigation.

Have your salary sent to a financial institution of your choice by Direct Deposit/Electronic Funds Transfer.

If you are newly hired, the documentation you present for purposes of completing the Department Homeland Security (DHS) Form I-9 on your entry-on-duty date will be verified through the DHS "E-VERIFY" system. Federal law requires the use of E-VERIFY to confirm the employment eligibility of all new hires. Under this system, the new hire is required to resolve any identified discrepancies as a condition of continued employment.


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Please read the entire announcement and all the instructions before you begin.
The following instructions outline our application process.

  • You must complete this application process and submit all required documents electronically by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of this announcement. 
  • We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday). Applying online is highly encouraged. If applying online poses a hardship, please contact our office during business hours well before the closing date for an alternate method. All hardship application packages with supporting documents must be submitted no later than noon on the closing date of the announcement in order to be entered into the system prior to its closing.
  • This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis; contact us if you are requesting this.

Step 1: Create a USAJOBS account (if you do not have one) at It is recommended that as part of your profile you set up automatic email notification to be informed when the status of your application changes. If you choose not to set up this automatic notification, then you will have to log into your USAJOBS account to check on the status of your application.

Step 2: Create a resume with USAJOBS or upload a resume into your USAJOBS account. Customize your resume to ensure it documents duties and accomplishments you have gained that are directly related to this position in order to verify that qualifications are met. Your resume must support your responses to the online questionnaire (you may preview the online questionnaire by clicking on the link at the end of the How You Will Be Evaluated section of the job announcement).

Step 3: Click "Apply Online" and follow the prompts to complete the Occupational Questionnaire and attach any additional documents that may be required.
You can update your application or documents anytime while the announcement is open. Log into your USAJOBS account and click on "Application Status." Click on the position title, and then select "Update Application” to continue.
NOTE: Verify that uploaded documents from USAJOBs transfer into the Agency's staffing system. Once in the Agency's staffing system you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Uploaded documents must be less than 3MB and in one of the following document formats: GIF, JPG, JPEG, PNG, RTF, PDF, or Word (DOC or DOCX).


You must submit a complete Application Package, prior to 11:59, ET, on the closing date of this announcement.  The following documents must be submitted for your application package to be considered complete. It is your responsibility to ensure all required documents are received within the required timeframes. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, illegible fax transmissions, delays in the mail service, system failure or downtime, etc. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.

  • Resume that includes the following information: 1) job information for which you are applying; 2) personal information; 3) education; 4) work experience including the work schedule and hours worked per week as well as dates of employment; and title, series and grade if applicable; 5) supervisors phone number and e-mail address for each work period listed and whether or not we may contact them for reference checks; and, 6) other qualifications.
  • College Transcripts if education is required for meeting basic qualifications and/or you are substituting education for specialized experience and/or if you are using education to meet the criteria for the quality category. An unofficial copy is sufficient with the application; however, if selected, an official college transcript will be required prior to entering on duty.
  • DD-214 (Member 4 Copy) if claiming Veterans’ Preference. Veterans claiming 10 point preference must also submit a VA Letter and an SF-15 Application for 10-point Veteran Preference. Current Active Duty members must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty under honorable conditions dated within the last 120 days.
  • Other required documents may include:
    • CTAP/ICTAP Required Documentation Reduction-In-Force: Certification of Expected Separation, Reduction-In-Force Separation Notice, or Notice of Proposed Removal; AND most recent performance evaluation; AND SF-50 demonstrating your separation or the position you will be separated from. 
    • Worker's Compensation Separation: Agency certification of inability to place employee AND Notification of Separation OR Separation SF-50.
    • Disability Annuity Termination: Notification from OPM of disability annuity termination AND Separation SF-50 of the last position held. Military Reserve or National Guard Technician Special Disability Retirement Annuity under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456: Certification of special disability retirement annuity from a military department or National Guard Bureau AND Separation SF-50 of the last position held.
NOTE: If a document is resubmitted, it replaces the previous submission, which means the previous document is no longer available to the Human Resources Office. If you are adding to, rather than replacing a previous submission, you must upload both the old document and the new document. Please verify that documents you are uploading from USAJOBs transfer into the Agency's staffing system as there is a limitation to the number of documents that can be transferred. However, once in the Agency's staffing system, you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Uploaded resumes must be less than 3MB and in one of the following document formats: GIF, JPG, JPEG, PNG, RTF, PDF, or Word (DOC or DOCX).


HRM Contact Center
Phone: 877-372-7248, Option 2
Fax: 209-795-6849
TDD: 800-877-8339
Agency Information:
USDA Forest Service
Do not mail in applications, see instructions on How to Apply tab.
Albuquerque, NM,
Fax: 209-795-6849


If you set up your USAJOBS account to send automatic email notifications, you will receive an acknowledgment email that the submission of your online Occupational Questionnaire and resume was successful, if you were referred to the selecting official for consideration, and if you were selected or not selected. If you choose not to set up automatic email notifications, you must check your USAJOBS account for the latest status of your application. Your application may be reviewed to verify that you meet the qualifications and eligibility requirements for the position prior to issuing lists to a selecting official. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted. Normally, a final job offer to the selected candidate is made within 30-60 days after the issuance of the certificate.

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