RSPB • Lough Neagh

Conservation Officer - Lough Neagh (Fixed-Term)

Employment type:  Contract
Salary:  £30940 - £33215 per annum

3–4 days/week at home

Fully flexible hours

Dog friendly

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Job Description

RSPB Northern Ireland is currently recruiting for a Conservation Officer in the Lough Neagh area. We are looking for self-motivated candidate who prides themselves on delivering high standards. You will have excellent ecological skills and knowledge of wet grassland and raised bog habitats and their conservation. A background in landscape-scale conservation, farm advisory, and nature conservation delivery mechanisms is desirable, as is an in-depth knowledge of breeding waders (curlews, redshanks, lapwings, and snipe), their habitat requirements, and relevant survey techniques.

About the role:

As part of the Northern Ireland Operations Team, you will deliver a range of work for priority species and habitats across the Lough Neag landscape. In this varied role, you will directly advise farmers and land managers, coordinate and undertake surveys, and help deliver conservation projects to help nature thrive across this priority landscape. This role will sit within the West NI Area Team and reports to the Conservation Manager. You will have an important external role, building positive relationships with key partners and stakeholders so that RSPBs policies and messages are understood and furthered within relevant partnerships.

This is a fantastic opportunity to play your part in delivering RSPB's conservation work within a landscape rich in wildlife and important for people. If this sounds like the job for you, we would love to hear from you!

You will be responsible for:

  • Providing advice, training and information to local communities, landowners, land managers and land use advisers on priority species and habitats, in close liaison with other members of the Conservation Team
  • Undertaking and overseeing species/habitat surveys and monitoring work on sites to ensure delivery of site/s objectives. This includes mapping, and the gathering & management of electronic data.
  • Demonstrating best practice in terms of collaboration & communication, working with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Managing medium and small projects using the RSPB’s Project Management Framework
  • Supervising contractors to carry out work on sites safely and legally to deliver project targets.
  • Building positive relationships with key decision-makers, external partners and stakeholders so that RSPB’s policies and messages are understood and furthered by decision-makers and within relevant partnerships and fora.
  • Manage and develop volunteers to ensure the delivery of an ambitious work programme maintaining focus on priority species and habitats


  • Career progression opportunities within Europe’s largest conservation charity
  • 34 Days annual leave (Including 8 bank holidays pro rata)
  • Annual volunteer day to spend with whichever charity your choose
  • Flexible working environment
  • Opportunity to work from home or office or hybrid working
  • Pension contribution, matched up to 7%
  • Mileage allowance and or fleet car booking
  • Relocation and interview expenses budget for candidates outside NI
  • Possibility of the post becoming permanent, to discuss at interview

Preferred criteria:

  • Sufficient understanding of species and habitats of Lough Neagh.
  • An understanding of breeding wader ecology.
  • Sufficient knowledge of various agri-environmental schemes for conservation work in Lough Neagh.
  • Ability to work effectively as a team player internally and in external partnerships.
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal, written, and presentational) - including speaking confidently and cogently in public to various audiences.
  • Ability to rapidly analyse significant quantities of information, prioritise and balance a diverse workload, often to tight deadlines.
  • Experience of negotiating with the public or private sector, to deliver biodiversity benefits.
  • Experience of working to survey, protect and/or manage important sites, species or habitats.

Additional Information

This is a Full-Time, fixed-term contract for two years - with the possibility of the post becoming permanent.

For all application enquiries, please get in touch with Sean.Woods@rspb.org.uk

We are actively recruiting for this role and reserve the right to close this advert at any time once sufficient applications have been received, so please don’t hesitate to apply.

As part of this application process, you will be asked to complete an application form including evidence of how you meet the criteria above.

The RSPB is an equal opportunities employer. This role is covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Before applying for this role, we recommend reading through the candidate guidance notes attached to the top of this advert.

We are committed to developing an inclusive and diverse RSPB, in which everyone feels supported, valued, and able to be their full selves. To achieve our vision of creating a world richer in nature, we need more people on nature's side and more diverse people. People of colour and disabled people are underrepresented across the environment, climate, sustainability, and conservation sectors. If you identify as a person of colour and/or disabled, we are particularly interested in receiving your application. Contact us to discuss any additional support you may need to complete your application.

Company benefits

Open to part-time employees
Open to compressed hours
Enhanced maternity leave
Enhanced paternity leave
Adoption leave
Shared parental leave
24 days annual leave + bank holidays
Enhanced sick pay

The FlexScore® is the result of a rigorous 2-step verification of a company’s flexibility

First we assess the flexibility options RSPB provides and then we anonymously survey a statistically significant proportion of their employees to make sure RSPB is as flexible as they say they are. Our assessment is based on the six key elements of flexibility: location, hours, autonomy, benefits, role modelling and work-life balance.

We ask the hard questions so you don’t have to.

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I feel the RSPB is very flexible and this is reflected through the Line Management chain - I know I have the flexibility on a daily basis to start early / finish late, if something crops up at home - I am very satisfied :)

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