Opportunities - Graduate Positions
I currently have 2 opportunities for new Ph.D. students. Brief project descriptions along with links to more detailed descriptions are provided below.
1) Ph.D. Research Assistantship - Elk population dynamics in western Montana
A Research Assistantship is available within the Ecology Department, Montana State University (MSU) to work closely with Jay Rotella and Robert Garrott to collect and analyze calf survival and cause-specific mortality data, as well as regional elk calf recruitment datasets. The project is being done in close coordination with Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks and is part of a larger project aimed at better understanding factors related to elk recruitment in western Montana. More complete information on the position, how to apply, and the start date can be found here.
2) Ph.D. Research Assistantship - Weddell seal population dynamics
A Research Assistantship is available within the Ecology Department, Montana State University (MSU) to work closely with Jay Rotella and Robert Garrott to analyze long-term mark-resight data for Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) in Erebus Bay, Antarctica. The Erebus Bay population of Weddell seals provides an ideal study population as large numbers of known-age animals have been uniquely marked and resighted since 1969. Currently, approximately more than 80% of the seals in the population are marked, and over 80% of marked animals are of known age. Each year, 300–600 pups are born at colonies in Erebus Bay and all are marked. Most females surviving to reproductive age return to breed in Erebus Bay. Encounter histories are available for >5,000 known-age females that were born within the study area from 1979 through 2007. Much is known about population size, reproductive patterns, and survival rates in the population. The graduate student will (1) be involved in field work and (2) use the existing database to investigate relationships between diverse intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of early-life survival and reproductive rates for pups born from different cohorts. The student will be expected to be a crew member in their 1st field season and to then lead a 6-member field team in Antarctica for 10 weeks each year (Oct to mid Dec) for a minimum of 2-3 subsequent seasons. More on the long-term project is available at our local web site for the project and our broader outreach site. More complete information on the position, how to apply, and the start date can be found here.