Graduate positions in microbial ecology at UBC Okanagan

Two positions (MSc or PhD) are available as of January 2019 in the Hart lab at UBC Okanagan. Both positions are fully funded and are part of larger collaborative group involving both academic and industrial partners.

Project 1:  Soil microbes and sustainable agriculture

We are looking for students (MSc and PhD) to study microbial communities and their functioning in sustainable agriculture and viticulture.
We are looking for a student to look at the fate microbial biofertilizers in ecosystems. In a related project, we are looking at how plant biodiversity can help mitigate crop diseases.

Position 2:  Evolutionary stability of root symbioses

We are looking for a MSc student to study the evolutionary stability of symbioses.  Using mycorrhizas as a model system, this project asks how plants are able to maintain diverse endophyte communities.

If interested, please submit your CV and a brief  letter explaining your desire to do graduate work to: Dr. Miranda Hart (miranda.hart@ubc.ca)

www.mirandahart.ca

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PhD Position: Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) Montréal, QC Canada

An exciting PhD opportunity is available at the Department of Biological Sciences, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). The candidat will join a collaborative group in conducting a large-scale harvest selection experiment based on experimentally-controlled depletions across a series of closed, natural trout populations inhabiting alpine lakes in the Rocky mountains. The goal of the project is to apply eDNA (environmental DNA) metabarcoding to evaluate the biodiversity consequences of size-selective fisheries harvesting on species losses and gains at the whole lake ecosystem scale. The project will also involve experimentation with zooplankton to explore eco-evolutionary responses to size-selective fisheries harvesting.

The successful candidate will receive training in population and community ecology, evolutionary biology, aquatic ecology and experimental ecological research. He/she will collaborate closely with researchers at McGill University, Concordia University, and with Parks Canada. The successful applicant will benefit from a strong scientific core in freshwater science at UQAM, as well as a dynamic and collaborative research environment in Montréal, QC.

Qualified applicants will ideally have an MSc degree in biology or a related field, demonstrate evidence of research potential, and have a strong work ethic and keen interest in aquatic ecology. Experience with with DNA techniques and strong statistical, communication, and interpersonal skills are assets. French linguistic skills are not required, but would be considered an asset.

The start date is september 2018 ou january 2019. Interested applicants should send a cover letter, unofficial transcripts, a C.V. and contact information for two academic/research references, to:

Alison DerryAssociate Professor

Département des sciences biologiques, Université du Québec à Montréal
Case postale 8888, Succursale Centre-ville, Montréal (Québec) H3C 3P8

Email: derry.alison@uqam.ca

Tel: 514-987-3000 ext. 3496 | Fax: 514-987-4647

Webpage : http://aquaticecoevo.uqam.ca/English/Homepage.html

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Graduate positions in Arctic Restoration Ecology (1 PhD. and 2 MSc.), Departments of Soil Science and Plant Sciences, University of Saskatchewan

Three fully funded graduate positions in Arctic Restoration Ecology (1 PhD. and 2 MSc.) are available in the Departments of Soil Science and Plant Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan.

This is a unique opportunity to join an interdisciplinary project spanning the fields of restoration ecology, soil science, and plant ecology. We will be examining the potential for using biological soil crusts and tundra surface organic layers to foster the recovery of arctic plant community assemblages and essential ecosystem functions following mining disturbance. Fieldwork will be conducted at a working mine site in Nunavut, Canada with opportunities to work closely with mine company staff. We will also be heavily involved in the development and delivery of an on-site education program for Nunavut youth integrating soil science, plant ecology, environmental monitoring, restoration and traditional ecological knowledge.

MSc. Project 1. This student will examine the establishment and recovery of actively restored biological soil crust communities on drilling waste. You will initiate a trial to test active soil crust restoration techniques, identify bryophyte and lichen species in the crusts to characterize crust community composition in relation to site micro environmental conditions, and measure ecosystem services such as photosynthesis and nitrogen fixation rates.

MSc. Project 2. This student will examine the active restoration of tundra vascular plant communities from locally collected propagules. You will initiate a trial to test the use of locally collected material on drilling waste sites, and will track the survival and establishment of vascular plants in relation to site micro environmental conditions.

PhD. Project 3. This student will examine how active restoration techniques influence the recovery of soil community structure. You will examine the belowground plant, bacterial, fungal, and archaeal communities in restoration treatments in relation to site micro-environmental conditions. You will use next generation sequencing techniques to characterize belowground communities, develop niche models for important species, and will link soil community structure to key soil ecosystem services. You will have opportunities to expand your work to additional questions, and to lead collaborations with other project members.

These projects have an anticipated start date of either September 2018 or January 2019. Project 1 will be supervised by Dr. Katherine Stewart and Projects 2 and 3 will be co-supervised by Drs. Lamb and Siciliano.

For more information:

Eric Lamb: http://homepage.usask.ca/~egl388/index.html

Katherine Stewart: https://agbio.usask.ca/faculty-and-staff/people-pages/katherine-stewart.php

Steven Siciliano: https://www.usask.ca/toxicology/people/faculty/steven-siciliano.php

Requirements:

PhD. Project. A thesis based (research) MSc. degree with evidence of scientific productivity through the publication of one or more peer reviewed manuscripts. Graduate level experience and training in one or more of the following fields: plant ecology, soil science, soil microbial ecology, bioinformatics, restoration ecology.

MSc. Projects. A BSc. or BSAg degree with a concentration in one or more of the following fields: bryology, plant ecology, soil science, or restoration ecology.

Application Procedure

Apply via e-mail to Eric Lamb (eric.lamb@usask.ca) with a package including:

  • Cover letter describing your background and research experience and indicating which project you are most interested in.
  • an up-to-date CV
  • unofficial transcript(s). A scan or .pdf copy is sufficient.
  • an example of your writing (e.g. a paper, extract from a thesis, or class project).
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Projet de doctorat: Impact cumulatif des pressions anthropiques sur les populations d’oiseaux de rivage nichant en Arctique

L’équipe de la Chaire K.-C.-Irving en sciences de l’environnement et développement durable de l’Université de Moncton cherche un.e étudiant.e pour un projet de doctorat qui commencera en septembre 2018.

Le projet de recherche vise à modéliser l’impact cumulatif de différentes pressions d’origine anthropique (p. ex. la surabondance d’oies des neiges supportées par les champs agricoles en milieux tempérés et les changements climatiques) sur la reproduction et la distribution de différentes espèces d’oiseaux de rivage nichant en Arctique. Certains objectifs de ce projet s’inscrivent dans les travaux collaboratifs menés par l’Interactions Working Group, un regroupement de plusieurs chercheur.e.s implémentant les mêmes protocoles dans plus de 14 sites distribués à une échelle circumpolaire (Canada, Alaska, Groenland, Norvège, Suède et Russie). L’étudiant.e fera partie d’une équipe dynamique de chercheur.e.s et d’étudiant.e.s et aura l’opportunité de travailler sur différents protocoles de terrain (p. ex. suivi des populations nicheuses de limicoles, captures de limicoles et de lemmings).

Ce projet se déroulera sous la supervision de Marie-Andrée Giroux à l’Université de Moncton. Une bourse de doctorat est disponible pour 4 ans, à laquelle s’ajoute une bourse de l’Université de Moncton défrayant approximativement la valeur des frais de scolarité facturés aux étudiant.e.s canadien.nes (les étudiants étrangers peuvent aussi bénéficier de cette bourse). L’étudiant.e devra également déposer des demandes de financement aux organismes subventionnaires (ex. CRSNG, FINB).

Compétences requises :

  • Avoir obtenu une maîtrise avec thèse en biologie, environnement ou discipline connexe
  • Avoir un esprit d’équipe et d’initiative
  • Posséder de bonnes capacités de rédaction
  • Posséder de bonnes aptitudes pour les analyses statistiques et/ou la modélisation mathématique
  • Posséder de l’expérience de terrain
  • Avoir un bon dossier académique

Comment et quand postuler?

Merci de postuler en envoyant les documents suivants d’ici le 29 juin 2018 à Marie-Andrée Giroux (marie-andree.giroux@umoncton.ca): CV, lettre de motivation, copie de tous les relevés de notes universitaires (incluant 1er cycle), noms et coordonnées de 3 référents.

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Graduate student position – behavioural ecology of white-footed mice

Graduate-level applications are being accepted for the Functional Ecology lab at the University of Ottawa, Ontario. We study co-adaptations among metabolic, behavioural, performance, and life-history traits using diverse tools ranging from comparative to quantitative genetic approaches. Current openings include field-based projects on white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus). Interested students should visit the Functional Ecology lab webpage for more information why and how to apply: https://vincentcareau.weebly.com/join-the-lab.html

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PhD position in Evolutionary Ecology/Bioinformatics – McGill University – MacDonald Campus

Scope

The fish population genetics and genomics (FPG2) lab in the Department of Natural Resource Sciences at McGill University is seeking applications from students interested in pursuing a PhD in bioinformatics, comparative phylogenomics, and population genomics. Part of the work will consist of de novo assembly and annotation of genomes from generated long read sequences, as well as, performing extensive population RAD and/or RNA sequencing surveys. Although fieldwork experience is not required, a strong potential exists for students to participate in sample collections in Arctic coastal and offshore marine environments, as well as in more local areas.

Skills

Candidates should have an academic background in ecology, evolution, genetics and/or informatics/bioinformatics and be an independent learner with a strong work ethic. A working proficiency in the R script writing language is recommended (working knowledge of Python/C++ also beneficial). Familiarity with Linux/Unix based high performance computing clusters (HPCC) and the use of bioinformatics packages (e.g., SOAP, Geneious, CLC genomics workbench and GATK among others) would be an asset. The successful candidate should also have strong lab and interpersonal skills allowing them to also work well in a laboratory setting and in a group.

The Department

Natural Resource Sciences (NRS) is a multi-disciplinary department based out of McGill’s Macdonald Campus in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue Québec, Canada (http://www.mcgill.ca/nrs/). McGill University offers competitive graduate scholarships, including tuition waivers, and visa differential waivers (for international students that qualify) for applicants based on grades and research experience (please see the sites listed below for more information).

http://www.mcgill.ca/internalawards/

http://www.mcgill.ca/gps/funding/students

Although funds are available to support a PhD student, the eventual hire is expected to apply for either national/provincial support and/or institutional internal graduate scholarships.

Application 

To apply, please send a current c.v., unofficial copies of academic transcripts, brief description of your research interests (~ 1/2 page), and contact information for 2-3 referees. Applications will be considered until the position is filled, but priority will be given to those received before July 1st. Electronic applications (PDF only please) can be sent to:

denis.roy5[at]mcgill[dot]ca
Denis Roy
Assistant Professor
Macdonald-Stewart Building
21111 Lakeshore Road
Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Quebec
H9X 3V9
FPG2 Lab webpage: http://denisroy.weebly.com

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POPULATION GENOMICS and eDNA Metabarcoding courses offered by Physilia-courses in Quebec city.

1) POPULATION GENOMICS

Where: Quebec City (Canada)

When: 12-16 November 2018

Instructors:
Dr. Martin Ian Taylor (University of East Anglia, UK)
Dr. Lewis G. Spurgin (University of East Anglia, UK)
Eric Normandeau (Laval University, Canada)

Overview: The course will cover the basics of population genomic analysis from SNP data onwards and will cover the key analyses that may be required to successfully analyze a population genetic data set. The course will NOT cover steps prior to generation of a .vcf file or SNP data set such as NGS data demultiplexing, clustering and SNP calling (This is covered in detail in the Introduction to RADseq course). This course will introduce Linux and the command line environment, basic perl and python usage, file conversions and manipulation, population structure and differentiation in R, outlier analysis, landscape / seascape genomics and introgression. Having completed the course, students should have a good understanding of the software and methods available for population genomic analysis and be competent in population genomic analysis.

Course website: https://www.physalia-courses.org/courses-workshops/course39/

2) eDNA Metabarcoding

Where: Quebec City (Canada)

When: 19-23 November 2018

Instructors:
Dr. Vasco Elbrecht (University of Guelph, Canada)
Eric Normandeau (Laval University, Canada)

Overview: After completing the workshop, students should be in a position to (1) understand the potential and capabilities of eDNA barcoding and metabarcoding, (2) run complete analyses of eDNA metabarcoding pipelines and obtain diversity inventories and ecologically interpretable data from raw next-generation sequence data and (3) design their own eDNA projects, including bioinformatic data analysis and planning of laboratory work. All course materials (including copies of presentations, practical exercises, data files, and example scripts prepared by the instructing team) will be provided electronically to participants.

While this course will focus on eDNA metabarcoding, however targeted single species detection and other alternatives will also be explored, as they can sometimes be suitable metabarcoding alternatives.

Course website: https://www.physalia-courses.org/courses-workshops/course40/

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Tenure-track Faculty Position in Terrestrial Ecology. Application deadline: 21 September 2018.

The Department of Biology in the Faculty of Science at the University of Waterloo invites applications for a full-time tenure-track faculty position at the Assistant Professor level in the area of Evolutionary Ecology of terrestrial organisms with a focus on either Mammalogy or Ornithology commencing July 2019, or another mutually agreeable date. Although candidates at the Assistant Professor level will be preferred, exceptional candidates at higher ranks may also be considered. We are seeking applications from outstanding scholars in evolutionary ecology whose research uses innovative field- and lab-based approaches (e.g., tracking, molecular, physiology, etc.) to investigate applied and/or theoretical questions in the area of ornithology or mammalogy in terrestrial environments. The research program should have a field-based component and may target the population-, species- or community-level. The successful candidate will join our dedicated team of scholars and teachers and will bring innovative and modern pedagogical practices to courses in both the core and ecology and evolution areas of our undergraduate and graduate curricula.

The successful applicant will have a PhD and a strong track record of innovative research in evolutionary ecology with important peer-assessed contributions to the field. Additionally, s/he will demonstrate a commitment to achieve outstanding undergraduate and graduate teaching and to make valuable service contributions within our collaborative environment. Finally, the candidate must either have, or demonstrate the potential to establish and maintain, an independent, externally-funded research program.

The salary range for this position is $95,000 to $120,000. Negotiations beyond this salary range will be considered for exceptionally qualified, or higher ranked, candidates.

The Department of Biology at the University of Waterloo was established in 1964 and has a team of 39 faculty committed to teaching and research excellence across the life sciences. Our department also includes ≈ 100 graduate students, 15 post-doctoral fellows and research associates, along with over 1800 Honours undergraduate students enrolled in either Co-operative Education or Regular Biology-related programs. Our Department fosters a dynamic and thriving research environment with over $5.5 million in annual research, 3 Canada Research Chairs, and 1 University Research Chair. Our graduate programs, including collaborations with other departments in the Faculties of Science, Environment, Mathematics & Engineering and the Water Institute, consistently attract outstanding Canadian and International applicants.

The University of Waterloo is located in the attractive and vibrant two-university Region of Waterloo (population 550,000) in southwestern Ontario, approximately 100 km from Toronto. We are centrally located relative to several other universities having strong Biology research profiles, including the University of Guelph, McMaster University and Western University. The University of Waterloo and the Waterloo region carry strong reputations in innovation and entrepreneurial culture, affording a myriad of collaborative opportunities.

The University of Waterloo respects, appreciates and encourages diversity. We welcome applications from all qualified individuals including women, members of visible minorities, Aboriginal peoples and persons with disabilities. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority. “Three reasons to apply: http://uwaterloo.ca/fauw/why.”

The closing date for applications is 21 September 2018. Application packages, which should be submitted electronically as a single pdf document, should include a brief cover letter, full curriculum vitae, statement of teaching philosophy (1-page), research plan (2-pages) and the names and full contact information of at least three references to:

Dr. Hugh Broders, Chair,
Department of Biology
University of Waterloo
Waterloo, Ontario
Canada
Email: biochair@uwaterloo.ca

 

 

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Postdoctoral Fellowship: Microbiome Influences on Coral Resilience to Climate Change University of Victoria, Canada. Deadline to Apply: July 2nd, 2018.

The Baum Lab at the University of Victoria (British Columbia, Canada) seeks to recruit an outstanding, highly quantitative postdoctoral fellow (PDF) to lead research investigating how the relationships between corals and their microbial partners (bacteria, Symbiodinium) vary with local and global stressors, and the extent to which the microbiome influences coral resilience to thermal stress.

Research Context and Specific Focus: Climate change poses an imminent threat to the world’s coral reefs. The 2015-2017 mega El Niño unleashed globally unprecedented heat stress on Kiritimati (Christmas) Island, a large coral atoll in the central equatorial Pacific Ocean. With its strong spatial gradient of local human disturbance, Kiritimati offers an excellent platform for studying how local and global stressors interact. We tagged, sampled and tracked >1,000 individual coral colonies from multiple species over space (across Kiritimati’s local disturbance gradient) and time (before, during and after the El Niño event) to characterize coral-associated microbial communities. The post-doctoral fellow will conduct bioinformatics and statistical analyses to synthesize our longitudinal next- generation sequencing (16S and ITS2) data set from these coral samples to investigate: 1) how coral-associated microbial communities vary with local disturbance and with multiple stressors (local disturbance and heat stress), and the influence of microbial communities on resilience to thermal stress; 2) covariance between coral-associated microbial and symbiont communities under single and multiple stressors. The fellow would also have the opportunity to conduct fieldwork on Kiritimati in the summers of 2019 and/or 2020. Together, these activities provide the opportunity to address questions of fundamental importance to coral reef resilience under climate change.

Required Qualifications:

  • A PhD in ecology, oceanography, mathematical biology, statistics, or computer science;
  • Excellent publication record (Minimum of 8 peer-reviewed publications);
  • Considerable experience processing, manipulating, and modelling large next- generation sequencing data set. Demonstrated proficiency with Unix, R and/or Python, and with software tools for bioinformatics pipelines and microbiome analyses;
  • Excellent technical, analytical, computer, organizational, and problem-solving skills. Strong attention to detail, and meticulous work style, as evidenced by previous research;
  • Experience working with microbial or Symbiodinium data sets and an in-depth understanding of the related literature;
  • Excellent time management skills, including the ability to meet project goals in a timely manner, and follow through on projects to completion;
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills, the ability to work both independently and collaboratively, and to communicate research findings at professional meetings and in high quality peer-reviewed journals.

Research Environment: The postdoc will be based in Prof. Julia Baum’s lab (https://baumlab.weebly.com; @BaumLab) in UVIC’s (https://www.uvic.ca/) Department of Biology. The Baum lab is a supportive and stimulating research environment, with a group of scientists who are committed to scientific outreach and policy, to open science, and to enhancing diversity in STEM. UVic is one of Canada’s top comprehensive universities (https://www.macleans.ca/schools/university-of-victoria/), has a vibrant ecology community (https://uvicecology.weebly.com/) and is located in beautiful Victoria, on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The PDF will also work collaboratively with Prof. Rebecca Vega-Thurber (http://vegathurberlab.oregonstate.edu) & Dr. Ross Cunning (http://www.rosscunning.com/).

Funding: Funding is available for a one-year initial period to cover the postdoctoral fellows’ salary ($55,000 per annum including medical and dental benefits), a new laptop computer and attendance at a major conference. Funding for a second and third year is contingent on the postdoctoral candidate applying, and being successful in the competition for either:

1) an NSERCPostdoctoral Fellowship (http://www.nserc-crsng.gc.ca/Students-Etudiants/PD-NP/PDF-BP_eng.asp; Notes: Candidates for this fellowship must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada; Fellowship is $45,000 per annum with an October 15, 2018 deadline, and would be topped up to $55,000, assuming satisfactory progress in year one; or

2) a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship (http://banting.fellowships-bourses.gc.ca/en/home-accueil.html; Notes: This fellowship is open to candidates of all nationalities; Fellowship is $70,000 per annum with an August 18, 2018 internal UVic deadline.

Both of these fellowships are highly competitive and require academic excellence and an outstanding publication record (e.g. ~8-12 peer-reviewed publications in quality journals). Dr. Baum will work with the successful applicant this summer/fall to craft the appropriate postdoctoral fellowship application. International applicants are also strongly encouraged to determine if PDF funding opportunities are available from their home country that would enable them to hold the fellowship internationally, in the Baum Lab.

To apply: Candidates should submit the following materials via email to Dr. Baum (baum ‘at’ uvic.ca) in a single PDF document, with your last name in the file name and the subject heading “Coral Microbiome PDF”:

  • a cover letter explaining your motivation for applying for this position, how your prior research experience qualifies you for the position, and your career goals;
  • a CV (including publication list and clear specification of relevant quantitative skills; publication list may include publications in advanced stages of preparation that will be in the review process by the above postdoctoral fellowship deadline dates);
  • names and contact details for three references.

Start date: September 2018 (flexible); Applicant must be highly competitive for, and available to write PDF applications in time for this year’s deadlines. If starting in the lab this fall, applicant should also be available to attend the Baum Lab’s lab retreat Labour Day weekend.

Deadline to Apply: Monday July 2nd, 2018.

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Postgraduate Certificate in Ecological Survey Techniques, University of Oxford

About the course

The Postgraduate Certificate in Ecological Survey Techniques aims to provide the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to conduct effective ecological field surveys for a range of key taxa, and to analyse field survey data with confidence.

The course (taught part-time, normally over one year) is designed for a wide range of professionals needing to up-skill in: Environmental management; Environmental assessment; Biodiversity monitoring.

Who the course is for

Professional ecological consultants, environmental managers and rangers, research and postgraduate students, and volunteers. The techniques covered are universal using international case studies and examples.

Many PGCert students are consultants, environmental managers and educators as well as volunteers and those looking to make a career change that are seeking flexible study combined with expert training.

Click here for more information.

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