DNR Position Duties & Qualifications

Table of Contents

Benefits of State Employment

Current DNR Position Openings

Non-Career Positions

Career Non-Degree Positions

Two-Year Degree Positions

Four Year Degree Positions


Benefits of State Employment

State employment benefits include everything from health insurance to retirement income and are worth about 40% of your salary. Immediately below you'll find a brief explanations of some of the benefits that are provided by the State of Michigan according to union contracts or Civil Service Rules.

Leave Time

Full time employees receive between 15 and 35 vacation leave days per year. Employees also receive 13 sick days per year, and employees receive 8 hours of leave to participate in certain school functions or community activities. Employees may also qualify for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for certain family or medical situations.

Holidays

State employees receive 12 scheduled holidays each year, which include New Years Eve Day and New Years Day, Christmas Eve Day and Christmas Day, Memorial Day, and Veterans Day just to name a few.

Alternative Work Schedules

Flexible work schedules and telecommuting options are available in many jobs.

Insurance and Other Benefits

Insurances include health, vision, dental and life. Employees also have the option to purchase additional life, accidental death, long term disability, long term care insurance, and legal services. Flexible spending accounts for medical expenses and child care are also available.

Deferred Compensation

Employees may invest income in a tax-deferred retirement investment program. The state offers two optional deferred compensation plans, the 457 and 401(k). Employees decide the amount you want deducted from your paycheck.

Retirement

Employees receive a minimum 4% state contribution toward their retirement fund. If an employee elects to contribute more, the state will match that percentage (up to 3%). ORS administers two different retirement plans for State of Michigan employees: a Defined Benefit (DB) plan and a Defined Contribution (DC) plan. Use the following link for detailed information: Two retirement plans for State Employees.


Current DNR Position Openings

For current DNR position openings, click this link, then scroll down to the Departments section, check the Natural Resources box, and click the Go button in the Search section of the page, which can be found just below the Departments section.


Non-Career Opportunities

Michigan Civilian Conservation Corps/Americorps

Americorps Staff member spraying weedsThis special program provides a variety of service opportunities to prepare young adults for future employment by enhancing on-the-job skills, offering many training opportunities, and providing hands-on work experience to protect Michigan’s unique natural heritage.

Requirements - Corps members must be residents of Michigan, 18-25 years of age, be unemployed at the time of enrollment and have a Social Security card before enrolling. Corps members may not be the son or daughter of an elected or appointed official nor can they have been employed by the DNR within the last 30 days.  Vacancies information is available on the MCCC/AmeriCorps Stewardship Crews.

Examples of Work - Stewardship crews may work on invasive species control; assisting with prescribed fire; collecting seeds from native plants; restoration efforts. Additional crews are needed to construct and prepare signs, to complete construction projects and develop habitat and recreation facilities.

State Worker

Seasonal State Workers planting treesEmployees in this classification perform a variety of unskilled, outdoor and indoor tasks.  This is a very popular position, usually lasting from 12 weeks to six months over the summer months for 719 or 1040 hours of work depending on the collective bargaining unit.

Requirements - Applicants must apply directly at the field office, district office, fish hatchery, park, or recreation area of their choice.  No specific education or experience is required.

Examples of Work - Cares for lawns, trees, shrubs, flowers, and vegetables; shovels dirt or debris; sweeps sidewalks, docks, lanes, and driveways; sweeps, mops, scrubs, waxes and polishes floors; washes and waxes automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles; assists in routine repetitive-type office clerical work; records and delivers messages and/or office mail; performs any duties necessary to maintain a state park or other facility.


Career Non-Degree Positions

Conservation Officer

Click the link (above) to go to the Conservation Officer web page.

Equipment Operator

State equipment operator standing on a John Deere tractor tireEmployees in this class operate gas and diesel-driven equipment in developing roads, trails, dikes, fishing sites, and building sites.

Requirements -- Applicants must possess a high school degree or GED certificate, with one year of experience in the operation of motorized equipment used in construction, maintenance, heavy transport, agriculture or forestry.  Some positions may require that the employee be able to obtain and maintain a Commercial Drivers License.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Equipment Operator

Examples of Work -- Operates a variety of maintenance or construction equipment including power graders, our-wheel-drive maintenance units, backhoes, mudjack machines, front-end loaders, tractors with attachments, bulldozers, and light and heavy maintenance trucks.

Salary and Benefits

Fisheries Assistant

DNR Fisheries Assistant plays with his buoyThese positions typically perform a variety of fisheries support activities at state fish hatcheries, research facilities and in the field interviewing anglers (creel survey).  These positions are assigned throughout the State and may be located at one of the State’s six fish hatcheries, at a research facility or at a predetermined creel survey location.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Fisheries Assistant.  The DNR typically hires these positions at the entry (6) level, with a normal progression through the experienced (E7) level.

Potential Duties

  • Participate in creel census to collect catch data from the public.
  • Interview anglers with regards to hours of fishing trip, method of fishing, target species, fish released and fish harvested.
  • Operate deck gear on great lakes vessels.
  • Set and lift nets on vessels.
  • Assist in maintenance and construction of fishing gear, gill nets and trawls.
  • Gather biological samples such as scales and fins.
  • Tag fish.
  • Clean/disinfect incubation health trays using brushes and hose.
  • Egg, fry and fish care.
  • Daily tank and raceway cleaning.
  • Assist with spawning activities.

Educational Requirements

Education level typically acquired through completion of high school.

Typical Geographic Locations

Salary and Benefits

Forest Fire Officer

DNR Forest Fire officer helps control wildfireEmployees in this class perform a range of forest fire activities designed to protect and maintain forest lands and their resources. These employees are responsible for fire prevention, detection and suppression of forest fires in the protection area.  Maintain all equipment and inspect for safe operations.

Requirements - Applicants must possess a high school degree or GED certificate, and work experience fighting fires as a member of an organized fire department (state, county, township, municipal, etc.) with completion of the Michigan Fire Fighter’s Training Council’s Level I A and B Basic Training Course or an equivalent military training course. (Two years of college 15 semesters (23-terms) credit hours in natural resources, fire technology, or forest technology may be substituted for the experience requirement.)  All positions require that the employee be able to complete physical capability testing.  Other positions may require an employee to obtain and maintain a Commercial Drivers License.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Forest Fire Officer

Examples of Work - Primary job is to protect human life, property and natural resources by prevention and suppression of wildfires.  Fire suppression activities include performing physically and mentally demanding duties directly on the fire line.  Directs control efforts during fires, plans attack on fires, establishes communications, and coordinates Department efforts with those of local police and fire officials.  Appraises damage caused by fires; constructs and maintains forest roads/trails, access roads; conduct studies relating to forest fires, including causes, locations where fires are most prevalent and time and season of occurrence. Also responsible for maintaining specialized fire equipment and assuring its fire readiness with regular inspections.  Assist in land management activities as assigned such as prescribed fire prescriptions, trespass complaints, timber sales, event permits and other forestry management activities.

Salary and Benefits

Park & Recreation Ranger

DNR Park Ranger driving an ORV at Warren Dunes State ParkEmployees in this class series participate in and oversee safety and security activities designed to provide a safe and secure environment for outdoor recreation in state parks and recreation areas.  The rangers utilize knowledge of park rules and regulations, as well as basic manual skills, related to hand power tools used in park/recreation area maintenance projects.

 Requirements - Applicants must possess a high school degree or GED certificate.  No specific experience is required.  Applicant must have the ability to understand and carry out oral and written instructions.  The ability to: learn and apply some knowledge of park rules and regulations; to meet the public and gain the required cooperation; to use common hand and small power tools used in minor building construction maintenance.  Some positions require that the employee be able to complete and maintain an annual Parks & Recreation Commission certification program, including physical capability testing and tactical training evaluations.  Other positions may require an employee to obtain and maintain a Commercial Drivers License.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Park and Recreation Ranger.  

Examples of Work - Patrols the campground area on foot and by vehicle to observe park users’ activities; brings instances of non-compliance with park rules to the attention of the visitor and requests compliance of the same; enforces park rules in accordance with authorized commission; registers campers, collects camping fees, and sells applicable motor vehicle permits; performs maintenance-related activities throughout park and recreation areas.

Salary and Benefits


Two-Year Degree Positions

Fisheries Technician

DNR Fisheries technicians and assistants help sort fish at a state hatcheryThese positions typically perform fisheries management support activities in the field.  They are involved in the collection of fish and habitat data, operation and maintenance of fisheries facilities and equipment including the State’s fish hatcheries, and fish stocking.  These positions are assigned throughout the State and may be located in a field office, research station or at one of the State’s six fish hatcheries.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Fisheries Technician.  The DNR typically hires these positions at the entry (8) level, with a normal progression through the experienced (E10) level.  Some positions may progress to the advanced (11) level.

Potential Duties

  • Fish planting, including loading of trucks and transporting of fish to planting sites. 
  • Drive fish planting trucks, requiring a commercial driver’s license (CDL).  Must be able to obtain a CDL within six months of hire date.
  • Serve as first mate on a great lakes research vessel and handle and rig fishing gear on vessels.
  • Surveys lakes, streams and marshes to identify fish, fauna and soil types.
  • Participate in collection and fertilization of eggs from fish and cares for and cleans developing eggs during incubation.
  • Perform fish age and growth analysis.
  • Build and maintain fishing gear such as gill nets, trawls, trap nets and trolling gear.
  • Maintain buildings/grounds and operate power tools and equipment.
  • Conduct guided tours of fisheries facilities such as fish hatcheries.
  • Collect biological data from fish including length, weight, age, sex, species, stomach samples and fin clips.
  • Perform specific chemical and biological analyses of water samples.

Educational Requirements

Possession of an associate’s degree in science with course work emphasis in limnology, ichthyology, aquatic systems, or field biology.

Typical Geographic Locations

Salary and Benefits

Forest Technician

Employees in this class perform a range of forest management support activities in order to protect, develop, and maintain the state’s forest lands and their resources.  Work is normally performed outdoors within a state forest area.  The technician prepares timber for sale, including establishing property and timber sale boundary lines, cruising timber for volume and marking trees to be cut.

Requirements - Possession of an associate’s degree in forest technology.  No specific type or amount of experience is required at the entry level.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Forest Technician.
Examples of Work - The employee performs a full range of forest technician assignments including timber sales, collecting field data for Forest Inventory, prepares maps, writes prescriptions, enters data, and updates inventory data following treatments; assists in wildfire suppression and prescribed burn programs; appraises timber volumes and values; operates and maintains reforestation equipment.

Salary and Benefits

Surveying Technician

Employees in this class perform a variety of technician-level surveying activities that provide assistance in the surveying of forest lands, building sites, recreation areas, and determinations of land boundaries under the guidance of a professional surveyor.

Requirements - Possession of an associate’s degree in civil technology or surveying technology. No specific type or amount of experience is required at the entry level. For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Survey Technician.

Examples of Work - Participate in a variety of technician-level surveying activities and provide assistance in the surveying of forest lands owned by the State. Survey instruments used to obtain the measurements and data necessary to determine the relative positions on, above and below the earth’s survey. These measurements are needed for the retracement of the original land surveys in the State of Michigan, the determination of existing real property boundaries, control to set corners of land boundaries. 
Salary and Benefits

Wildlife Technician

Employees in this class perform a range of wildlife management support activities in order to protect, develop, and maintain the state’s natural wildlife population for environmental and recreational purposes.  Work is normally performed outdoors within a state game, recreation or forest area.

DNR Wildlife Technician participates at a deer check stationRequirements -- Possession of an associate degree in wildlife technology, wildlife biology, wildlife management or agriculture.  No specific type or amount of experience is required at the entry level. For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Wildlife Technician.

Examples of Work -- Participates in improvement activities in the game area, planning the area habitat management program, and evaluating habitat conditions; obtains biological data by trapping and tagging animals and waterfowl, making hunter-use checks, game-bag checks, waterfowl counts, and similar investigations; assists in planning food and cover for wildlife species; plows, seeds, and cultivates herbaceous food and cover crops, and plants trees and shrubs; maintains trails and roads, makes brush shelters, and manages vegetation in food patches.

Salary and Benefits


Four Year Degree Positions

Fisheries Biologist

DNR Fisheries Biologists working with walleye fryThese positions are typically involved in a variety of activities designed to protect and enhance the States aquatic resources. They are assigned throughout the State and may be either located in a field office or at one of the State’s six fish hatcheries. For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Fisheries Biologist. The DNR typically hires these positions at the entry (9) level, with a normal progression through the experienced (P11) level. Some positions may progress to the advanced (12) level.

Potential Duties

  • Oversee and manage specific geographical areas or large water bodies and be involved with all aspects of fisheries management and habitat protection for all aquatic resources in that particular area.
  • Conduct age-growth studies using fish collections from lakes and streams.
  • Conduct studies of fish populations.
  • Approve permits to use land resources that impact water and aquatic habitat.
  • Collect and examine fish to determine the health of fishery and water quality.
  • Plan and coordinate statewide fish distribution.
  • Oversee fish cultural operations and assist in egg collection and incubation.
  • Oversee treatment of fish with chemicals to control disease. 

Educational Requirements

  • Possession of a bachelor’s degree in fisheries biology, fisheries management, aquatic biology or zoology.

Typical Geographic Locations

Salary and Benefits

Forester

DNR Forest technician does forest tech stuff in a forestEmployees in this class participate in forest management activities designed to protect, develop and maintain forest lands and their natural resources for environmental, economic and recreational purposes.

Requirements -- Possession of a bachelor degree with a major in forestry.  No specific amount or type of experience is required at the entry level.  For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Forester.

Examples of Work -- Coordinates and participates in the Forest Inventory program within an assigned work area by recommending assignment of compartments, preparing summaries, reports, collecting field inventory data, preparing maps and writing standard prescriptions. Coordinates and participate in developing and reviewing timber sales to ensure that they meet ecosystem management guidelines. Analyzes inventory, timber sale, and other data for management decisions.

Salary and Benefits

 

Research Biologist

DNR Fisheries Research BiologistThese positions typically are responsible for serving as the primary researcher for specific research projects focused on fisheries management issues. These positions are assigned throughout the State at one of the Fisheries Research Stations. For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Research Biologist. The DNR typically hires these positions at the entry (9) level, with a normal progression through the experienced (P11) level. Most positions progress to the advanced 12 or 13 levels.

Potential Duties

  • Write technical scientific reports detailing research results to present in scientific journals, division or department reports, and oral presentations.
  • Write research study proposals and seek funding for research projects through state and federal agencies.
  • May specialize in particular species or sampling methodologies.
  • Interprets scientific data and findings for the public.
  • Use statistical models to test hypotheses and estimate effects of physical, biological, and fisheries-related variables on fish population abundance and dynamics. 
  • Develop studies and survey designs, and conduct research and assessment studies on great lakes fishes with emphasis on specific species. 
  • Oversee division staff, students and volunteers to assist in research projects, including the collection and computer input of data.

Educational Requirements

  • Master’s degree (thesis-based) in wildlife management, wildlife biology, fisheries management, fisheries biology, or a related biological science with a research emphasis and;
  • 8 semester (12 term) credits of upper-undergraduate or graduate-level courses which must include a course in experimental design and other course in quantitative methods such as advanced calculus, computer science, statistics, or mathematical modeling.

Typical Geographic Locations

Salary and Benefits

Wildlife Biologist

Employees in this class participate in a variety of wildlife management activities designed to protect, develop, and maintain wildlife populations and habitat.

Requirements -- Possession of a bachelor degree with a major in animal ecology, wildlife biology, wildlife management. No specific amount or type of experience is required at the entry level. For a general overview review the Civil Service Class Specification for Wildlife Biologist

Examples of Work -- Plans and carries out habitat manipulation for the benefit of wildlife in forested and agricultural areas of the state; collects data in special fields such as waterfowl, deer and pheasants; plans and develops timber sale proposals in forest areas to improve game habitat.  Inventories game birds and mammals on experimental or managed state-owned lands; traps and transports animals to establish new populations or resolve animal conflicts.

Salary and Benefits


For further information, please contact:

Michigan Department of Natural Resources
Po Box 30028
Lansing, MI  48909
517-284-5013