Animal Caretaker Leader

Beltsville, Maryland
Sep 19, 2020
Sep 27, 2020
Full Time


This position is located in the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Beltsville Agricultural Research Center (BARC), Research Animal Support (RAS), in Beltsville, MD.

The incumbent will lead and instruct employees in the care, feeding, handling, restraining, medically treating; breed agricultural animals; establish work priorities; and annotate animal data for record keeping.

Learn more about this agency


  • Instruct and train employees when circumstances require minor changes in usual operating procedures.
  • Complete and submit various forms and reports required by researchers (i.e., feed consumption, breeding dates, etc.) or by the Supervisor (i.e., records of feed, bedding and miscellaneous supplies delivered to specific research projects).
  • As directed administer medicines, i.e., by injection or orally by capsule with a capsule gun.
  • Collect animal samples (many are infected with Bio Level 2 organisms) such as blood, urine, feces and tissues as required.
  • Responsible for feeding animals in accordance with specific instructions under protocol regarding diets.
  • Operate tractors ranging from 28 horse power, 6 forward and 2 reverse gears to 85 horse power and 6 forward and 2 reverse gears to 85 horse power and 10 forward and 2 reverse gears.
  • Restrain animals during experimental work in a safe and calm manner to prevent injury to animals and employees.
  • Responsible for castrating, docking, and/or dehorning animals as directed.

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • You must be a US Citizen or US National
  • Males born after 12/31/1959 must be Selective Service registered or exempt
  • Subject to satisfactory adjudication of background investigation and/or fingerprint check
  • Successful completion of one-year probationary period, unless previously served.
  • Direct Deposit ? Per Public Law 104-134 all Federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to their financial institution
  • Successfully pass the E-Verify employment verification check. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit E-Verify at
  • Must possess a valid, State issued, CDL if operating a vehicle exceeding 26, 000 GVW on public roads.
  • Must report to or remain on work site regardless of extreme weather or other emergency conditions.
  • Ability to pass pre-employment physical examination for ability to lift 80 lbs.
  • Must report to or remain on work site for budget shutdowns.
  • AALAS training is required.
  • May be required to maintain current training and pass written examination for Incinerator Operator Certification from the State of Maryland


In order to qualify for this position you must meet the following by the closing date of the vacancy announcement:
10/02/2020Qualifications will be determined under the Job Element Rating System X-118C, Qualifications Standard Handbook. While a specific length of time and experience is not required for most Wage Grade positions, you must show through experience and training that you possess the best qualified level of knowledge and skill necessary to perform the duties of this position. Qualification requirements emphasize the quality of experience, not necessarily the length. The responses to the questionnaire and your resume should be in significant detail to provide the person rating your application with a good understanding of your ability to do the job, technical knowledge, work, and training experience, etc. (For example You must have the ability to perform the duties of a, Animal Caretaker Leaderwithout more than normal supervision (Screen Out)). Applicants who do not meet the SCREEN OUT ELEMENT will not be given further consideration.

Physical Efforts:
The incumbent is often required to lift and carry feed, animals and materials weighing up to 80 lbs. Great physical effort and ability are required in the handling and restraining of animals. The incumbent makes frequent movements of arms and legs to manipulate tractor controls and equipment controls.

Working Conditions: Works in closely confined rooms and areas or in outside areas. May be required to work in all kinds of weather or in situations where temperature variance is considerable.Incumbent is subject to manure, dust, odors, corrosive chemicals, high noise levels,pesticides, etc. Incumbent works with zoonotic and experimental infectious agents in animals. There is also a greater degree of exposure to injury from bites and kicks since incumbent personally handles sick or ill-natured animals. Incumbent is subject to danger of falls on damp, wet, and slippery barn floors. Subject to injury from equipment and vehicle operation.


This position does not have an education qualification requirement.

Additional information

Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP), Reemployment Priority List (RPL), or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): Visit the OPM website for information on how to apply as a CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP eligible. To exercise selection priority for this vacancy, CTAP/RPL/ICTAP candidates must meet the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors. CTAP/ICTAP candidates must be rated and determined to be well qualified (or above) based on an evaluation of the competencies listed in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. When assessed through a score-based category rating method, CTAP/ICTAP applicants must receive a rating of at least 85 out of a possible 100.

Recruitment or Relocation Incentive may be authorized. Final determination to pay an incentive will be made by the hiring official at time of job offer.

This position is covered by a Bargaining Unit Agreement.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Applications will be evaluated in accordance with Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) Delegated Examining Procedures and USDA policy using category rating. Applicants who meet basic minimum qualifications will be placed in one of three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veteran's preference will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Category placement will be determined based on applicants' quality of experience and the extent they possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA) or competencies:

  • Ability to Interpret Instructions, specifications; other than blueprints
  • Ability to Lead or Supervise
  • Ability To Use and Maintain Tools and Equipment
  • Dexterity And Safety
  • Knowledge of Materials
  • Technical Practices (theoretical, precise, artistic)
  • Use of Measuring Instruments

Your application, including the online Assessment Questionnaire, will be reviewed to determine if you meet (a) minimum qualification requirements and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your resume must clearly support your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position. Those determined to be in the best qualified category will be referred to the selecting official for consideration.

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 may be adjusted to more accurately reflect your abilities, or you may be found ineligible. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating. Providing inaccurate information on Federal documents could be grounds for non-selection or disciplinary action up to including removal from the Federal service.

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" button to the right.

To view the application form, visit:

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk

Trust determination process

Required Documents

The following documents are required for your applicant package to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, your system failure, etc. Encrypted documents will not be accepted. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.
  • Resume that includes:1) personal information such as name, address, contact information; 2) education; 3) detailed work experience related to this position as described in the major duties including work schedule, hours worked per week, dates of employment; title, series, grade (if applicable); 4) other qualifications.
  • If claiming veteran's preference, you must submit a DD214, Certificate of Release from Active Duty, which shows dates of service and discharge under honorable conditions.If currently on active duty you must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty service under honorable conditions not later than 120 days after the date the certification is submitted.Veteran's preference must be verified prior to appointment.Without this documentation, you will not receive veteran's preference and your application will be evaluated based on the material(s) submitted.
  • If claiming 10-point veteran's preference you must provide the DD214 or certification requirements (see above bullet), plus the proof of entitlement of this preference as listed on the SF-15 Application for 10-point Veterans' Preference. The SF-15 should be included but is not required. Failure to submit these documents could result in the determination that there is insufficient documentation to support your claim for 10-point preference. For more information on veterans' preference visit FEDSHIREVETS
  • Surplus or displaced employees eligible for CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP priority must provide: proof of eligibility (RIF separation notice, notice of proposed removal for declining a transfer of function or directed reassignment to another commuting area, notice of disability annuity termination), SF-50 documenting separation (as applicable), and your most recent SF-50 noting position, grade level, and duty location with your application per 5 CFR 330.

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