OKALOOSA COUNTY, Fla. — Are you interested in black bears and helping people avoid conflicts with them? Do you have a flexible work schedule and have a vehicle that can tow a small trailer? If you answered yes, you might be a great fit as a bear response contractor for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).
According to an announcement from the FWC, bear response contractors are trained to assist with various bear conservation efforts, including but not limited to helping residents and businesses avoid conflicts with bears, collecting information from and disposing of dead bears, and setting and monitoring bear traps.
The FWC is looking for multiple contractors to help respond to human-bear conflicts in Bay, Escambia, Gulf, Highlands, Lake, Marion, Okaloosa, Orange, Santa Rosa, Seminole, Volusia, and Walton counties.
Bear contractors with the FWC will work on an “as needed” basis, which can vary by season, area, and year.
Contractors are paid per activity rather than hourly. Income from contract activities would therefore only supplement existing income sources, the FWC said.
Interested individuals must be willing to work flexible hours, including nights, weekends or holidays; use their own vehicle; have the ability to haul a small trailer and secure their own general liability insurance, which can cost $300 to $1,000 per year.
People interested in becoming a contractor should send their resume, contact information, counties of interest, and three professional references to BearManagement@MyFWC.com or FWC, Bear Management Program, 620 S. Meridian St. 6A, Tallahassee, FL 32399.
For more information on the FWC’s Florida Black Bear Management Program and the bear response contractor program, visit MyFWC.com/Bear.